In heart of Imperial’s recent campaign for Student Money Week I thought I would add a few of my own tips that help me manage and budget my money effectively. The #FindTheBalance campaign run by the university gave some really helpful tips and advice from Student Finance Services and from current students. Here I have compiled some of the most helpful and achievable ideas in one place, so you can come back and reflect should you need to throughout the year.
Keep a Spending Log
It doesn’t have to be pretty and artsy like the ones you see people spend their life designing in bullet journals, but I find it really helps to make a note of everything you spend each week and calculate your weekly outgoings.
When a professor asks you a question in a seminar how should you reply? According to one my hall seniors, you shouldn’t say anything, lest you embarrass yourself. Instead, you should “suck up” to professors by going to their office hours.
I found this sentiment quite surprising; I always thought that answering questions in seminars, God forbid raising your hand to try to answer, was a great learning opportunity. After all, the purpose of university for me has always been to learn, not just to memorise content for tests, but to become more confident, to try to tackle hard and interesting problems.
The Imperial Spring 2020 Telethon will be running for 7 weeks in February and March. I worked on the Spring 2019 Telethon. So, I decided to write about what the job entails and provide some advice for future callers!
This campaign aims to reach out to alumni to share exciting news from Imperial with them and to invite them to support the college through a range of giving opportunities. Ultimately, the telethon is not about fundraising. It is about initiating and strengthening long-term contact between Imperial and its alumni. It is also about you enjoying great conversation with alumni.
The Time Commitment:
Shifts take place on weekdays in the evening on the weekend during the day and afternoon.
Disclaimer: Views expressed below are based my own experiences and are not intended to hurt anyone 🙂
As a traditional Indian living in London and recently moved out of Jakarta (Indonesia), I have thus far been part of three very distinct “worlds”. Below is a screenshot of a map showing all the places I’ve lived in so far. Interestingly, each of the countries I have lived in so far is different and at times ‘contradictory’ in multiple areas, from dietary habits and lifestyle to societal mindset and their respective systems.
India: It goes without saying that given the massive population and size of my country (with over 1.3 billion people who speak over 1000 languages and belong to various religions!),
Welcome to Round 2 of the Imperial Survival Challenge! Getting back into the ‘zone’ after weeks of slacking off and chilling on the couch during Christmas break does take a lot (especially if you forgot how to write over Christmas :))
Start of Autumn Term
I remembered what the start of the Autumn term looked like. All the “freshers week” events, so-called ice-breakers, socials and “introduction” lectures to the various courses ran through my exhausted mind. The time I got to spend with new faces, exploring the city and attempting to sort out finances (clearly didn’t work for the first few weeks, thanks to my amazing cooking skills).
Similarly to a little bird flying away from its beloved nest, leaving home to come study in a huge city can be extremely daunting for most prospective students. Add to that the many responsibilities (for example grocery shopping, cooking, washing) of an independent life and it is easy to be terrified. However, this is something that we have all been through. Been an accommodation tour guide on the open days and post to discussions with freshers have shown me that many prospective students are concerned about finding a part time job or knowing if it is even possible to reconcile their studies with a job.
Lots of people say that they’re a bunch of rubbish, and that if you want to change, you can do it anytime. I’m a big proponent for them, though. For sure, New Years resolutions come with problems. I’ve been unrealistic with mine sometimes, with crazy past resolutions being hitting 100% in tests, getting 8 hours of sleep every night (never gonna happen, haha), going from a cheese obsessed vegetarian to vegan (I want to, but not overnight!).
New Years resolutions are great because with the start of a new year, the changes you make can be traced back to January 1st, and it feels more significant.
I’ve really needed a job to undo my financial errors. To be blunt, I was very financially reckless last term, knowing fully well that I was spending more than I was getting, and that nothing could really bail me out. Therefore, I decided to return to my gap year job in retail.
Being the most busy season of the year, they welcomed me with open arms!
Working during the Christmas holidays has been a blessing, but not without its stresses. This blog post outlines the good and bad parts of Christmas retail.
The good parts
Money! Ultimately, I needed this job because the minus sign on my bank statement was turning my blood cold.
During the fall term I spent most of my time on campus, even coming in on weekends to use the pool at Ethos and get some work done in the quiet student common room of my department building. But now that the College is closed for the holidays I’ve been spending a lot more time at home, which for me is a student accommodation in North London. Finding a place to live in London was a big concern for me as an incoming international postgraduate student, as options through Imperial were limited, and I know that many of my fellow students have been in the same boat.
Whilst my first two years at Imperial could be largely summed up by my extra curricular activities, coming into third year I have decided to focus my attention on my degree in order to secure that 2.1. (I’m not that academic :/ )
With this in mind, my first step was to decide what activities I would continue into final year, and what would sadly have to face the chop. Having been elected President of MathSoc, I knew that this would be my biggest focus and would take up most of my free time.