Recent College Graduate

  • 10 Organization Tips

    August 8, 2011 - Leave a Comment

    How important is being able to organize well in your daily life?  The importance will vary depending on a person’s personality and life involvement.  As a university student who is carrying a full course load and interning with Wi-Ex, organization is a must!  Between due dates for school papers or projects and deadlines at work, I have to be organized to keep it all straight.  We all know that person, whether it be a fellow classmate, teammate, or coworker, that seems to wait until the last minute because “they forgot” or “lost track of the work”.  We also all know that person where everything has to be “perfect” all the time.  Both of these personalities can be exhausting!  We all need to find that balance between perfection and disorganization in order to navigate work and life efficiently and with minimal stress.  Oprah.com listed the “10 habits of highly organized people” to help us all work towards or achieve that perfect balance to keeping on track in life.

    (Oprah.com) – To read full article click here.
    1. Walk away from bargains

    2. Make peace with imperfection
    Oprah.com : How to stop being perfect all the time

    3. Never label anything "miscellaneous"

    4. Schedule regular decluttering sessions
    Oprah.com: Peter Walsh's 3 rules for getting organized this summer

    5. Stick with what works

    6. Create a dump zone

    7. Ask for help
    Oprah.com: When to ask for help -- and how to do it

    8. Separate emotions from possessions

    9. Foresee (and avoid) problems

    10. Know where to donate

    To read the full article click here.

  • Recent Graduate Blog- Budgeting

    January 11, 2010 - Leave a Comment

    As a recent graduate, one of the most important things that I’m learning is how to budget my expenses. Now that I have my first job and my first apartment, I have to figure out a way to pay for all the necessities, and leave some money left over to have fun with. This task was especially daunting during the holidays, when I was most anxious to be with my friends and loved ones to spend quality time together.

    This season, I made my spending choices carefully and figured out where I could save money, while still having fun. The following are a few of the key ways I stayed within my budget this holiday season:

    • Went for a fun girl’s-night-out with my close girl friends in lieu of exchanging gifts. My close girl friends and I we went to Sips n’ Strokes where were created art and brought snacks and wine, instead of our usual gift swap.

    • Shopped for my family’s Christmas gifts on eBay. I was able to comparison shop, and find great deals on the items I was looking for. As an added bonus—I didn’t have to waste my gas or my time in the hectic holiday shopping madness!

    • Filled my Christmas wish list with things that I actually needed, rather than just wanted this year. For the Wi-Ex white elephant, I snagged a Blockbuster gift card, which I can use instead of going out to the movies one night. I also got a Wal-Mart gift card that I asked for to help pay for some items that I need for my apartment. My family pitched in by gifting me work outfits and necessities, so I won’t have to get them myself.

    By paying closer attention to my spending this year I was able to exchange gifts and spend time with my friends and family while staying within my budget. I’m excited that I was able to do this, because starting in February I need to start paying back my student loans. That should certainly make things more interesting in the New Year!

  • Recent College Graduate- Apartment Hunting

    October 7, 2009 - Leave a Comment

    In my last blog, I wrote about how lucky I felt to have found a job, and how I thought job hunting was going to be one of the hardest things I was going to have to do. Unfortunately, this was not true-I had never tried to find an affordable 1 bedroom apartment in Atlanta before.

    I knew to some degree, apartment hunting wasn’t going to be a cakewalk, especially when I realized that I was going to have to get a 1 bedroom apartment in a large city, but I never realized how time consuming it was going to be. I was spoiled by living in Athens, Georgia where most apartments are new builds in gated communities, have pools, walk-in closets, and are under $500 a month. This is apparently not the case in Atlanta, and I had to accept that my “want” list was going to have a lot of empty check boxes.

    Right off the bat, I had to get more realistic expectations about what I was going to get, and about what I could afford. It was clear that I would have to sacrifice some amenities, which I had enjoyed in Athens if I was going to live alone in Atlanta. Also, after doing a little calculating about how much of my budget was going to be used for living expenses, I realized that I was also going to have to make sacrifices budget wise- specifically in the shopping, eating out, and entertainment portions of my budget.

    My next problem was the hardest to deal with—the leasing office hours for apartment complexes. Leasing offices close between 5 and 6 pm on weekdays. Full-time jobs require their employees to work until 5 of 6 pm. Hmm... sounds like a problem if you have a full time job AND need a new apartment. For several weeks, I would take short lunches and leave a few minutes early to go look at apartments. If I was lucky, I wouldn’t sit in traffic through my designated tour time, and would get to see an apartment. If I was unlucky, I would show up and the doors would already be locked. It became a frustrating experience to spend all of my free time looking for apartments and worrying about when I was going to find them time to go see them.

    Finally, after weeks of trying to do it all on my own, and getting completely stressed out in the process, I finally relinquished control toProMove.com.  They are a company based out of Atlanta that literally take all the leg work out of finding apartments that fit the criteria you’re looking for. They look for the best move in deals, call around and find what units are available, and put it all on a convenient online profile for you to look at decided where you want to see.

    ProMove turned out to be the help that I needed to keep my apartment search from taking over my life, and kept me from taking up full time residence in my best friend Katie’s parent’s spare bedroom. During my apartment searching stint, I also used Rent.com, and ApartmentFinder.com to help me. All of these websites offer great services to find apartments, save your searches and keep all of you information in one place.

  • The Journey of a Recent College Graduate - Finding a Job

    August 26, 2009 - Leave a Comment

    As a recent graduate of the University of Georgia, I have been fortunate enough to find a job, in an economy which has many recent grads jobless.  As one of the “lucky ones”, I’d like to share my experience and some of tools that I’ve used in the past year while preparing for the job hunt.

    Even as a college senior, I knew that it was a tough economy and that I was up against an astounding numbers of qualified candidates for a very limited number of jobs. I remember hearing about hundreds of applicants for a janitorial position (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29574766/), proving furthermore that there were too many people applying for too few jobs.

    In my months of searching before I graduated, I used my university’s job listing website, Dawglink.com, my school’s career services weekly emails, Monster.com,  CareerBuilder.com,  and Yahoo! Jobs but to no avail. On the majority of these sites, I got literally no response. Not even to say that the position had been filled. It felt like I was reaching out to these companies, and they didn’t even value my efforts enough to warrant a response.

    As graduation rapidly approached, and the thought of moving back home with my parents haunted me, I realized that I needed t o change my tactics. It was clear that I was getting lost in this sea of qualified candidates, and that I really needed to separate myself from my classmates. For this, I turned to networking. I began reaching out to former managers and co-workers from my prior internships, and starting catching up with them. Often times they put me in direct contact with a friend or coworker who had a position available. Other times, they set me up with someone who would have an interesting view, or worked for a cool company, for an informational interview.

    Through meeting these contacts, and having interviews for positions, or informational interviews, they got to know me more as an individual and were then willing to pass my resume around to their friends and colleagues, further expanding my network. LinkedIn was a really useful tool to help stay connected with these contacts, and stay updated.

    Once I began meeting with companies I felt more in control of my career, because I was actually meeting with people, and making contacts, that I could use. Even though I didn’t find a position immediately, patience and perseverance paid off for me when one of these contacts passed along my resume to someone who was hiring.

    Now I that I am gainfully employed, all I need is a place to live…

  • Recent College Graduate Blog- Budgets

    January 1, 2009 - Leave a Comment

    As a recent graduate, one of the most important things that I’m learning is how to budget my expenses. Now that I have my first job and my first apartment, I have to figure out a way to pay for all the necessities, and leave some money left over to have fun with.

    This task is especially daunting during the holidays, when I’m most anxious to be with my friends and loved ones to spend quality time together. This season, I made my spending choices carefully and figured out where I could save money, while still having fun. The following are a few of the key ways I stayed within my budget this holiday season:

    • Went for a fun girl’s-night-out with my close girl friends in lieu of exchanging gifts. My close girl friends and I we went to Sips n’ Strokes where were created art and brought snacks and wine, instead of our usual gift swap.
    • Shopped for my family’s Christmas gifts on eBay. I was able to comparison shop, and find great deals on the items I was looking for. As an added bonus—I didn’t have to waste my gas or my time in the hectic holiday shopping madness!
    • Filled my Christmas wish list with things that I actually needed, rather than just wanted this year. For the Wi-Ex white elephant, I snagged a Blockbuster gift card, which I can use instead of going out to the movies one night. I also got a Wal-Mart gift card that I asked for to help pay for some items that I need for my apartment. My family pitched in by gifting me work outfits and necessities, so I won’t have to get them myself.

     By paying closer attention to my spending this year I was able to exchange gifts and spend time with my friends and family while staying within my budget. I’m excited that I was able to do this, because starting in February I need to start paying back my student loans. That should certainly make things more interesting in the New Year!

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