Major Mistakes College Students Make and How to Avoid Them (Vol 1)

It wasn’t that long ago I was graduating from high school and moving into the dorms at GSU. I was excited but had no clue what to expect living on my own. The next four years was a series of trial and errors, most of which cost me tons of money, humility, and time. Learn how to avoid these major mishaps all college students seem to make in Vol 1 of “Major Mistakes College Students Make”.

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Taking Out a Credit Card With a Limit You Could Never Pay Back

Swiping a piece of plastic is so easy. It doesn’t feel like you are spending a dime until you get your first credit card statement. I made the mistake of ignoring my first three payments and soon the fees, interest and amount snowballed into an unpayable debt which lingered on my credit report for seven years.  It’s so easy to go into thousands of dollars of debt with nothing to show for it other than some outdated clothes from Urban Outfitters.

How to Avoid:  Look into opening an account with a local credit union and sign up for a basic secured Visa card. A basic secured card is a pre-payed credit card so you never hurt your credit by going over a limit yet it still helps you build your credit. Opening a card and account with a credit union makes banking a lot easier as well. They have less fees and seem to be a bit easier to work with from my experience.

Not Protecting Your Privacy

Do not send, take or upload photos of yourself doing anything more than G-rated. Ask yourself, would mom and dad put this on the fridge? A photo can go viral in seconds and ruin your privacy and image for years. All it takes is one upload from you OR someone else. Scared? YOU SHOULD BE!

How to Avoid: Set your social media security on a higher level so when someone uploads a pic of you doing a keg-stand you have to “approve it” before it goes viral.

Skipping Class

Do not get into this habit….ever! It’s the fastest way to get kicked out of your University. Attendance is noticed even when it’s not recorded. When it comes down to you passing or failing by three points, a professor will remember those who were respectful with attendance and possibly help you out to earn the extra points when you need them most. It is amazing how much you can miss by not attending one class. College classes move faster than any classes you have ever taken in high school. Time management is one of the most important things you are being taught during freshmen year.

How to Avoid:  Email your professor immediately and apologize if you miss a class. Do not ramble on about your flu, dead fish, or how your car got towed, just make it short and let them know you’d like to make up the class if possible.  Get a “buddy” system going with a friend in class so you can copy missed notes.

Gabe Coley

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