Thriving in the Garden State: Top Tips for New Jersey College Students

The great state of New Jersey has a fine record of academic achievement, with dozens of colleges providing tertiary education and Princeton, one of the most famous universities in the world. Students from out of state who find themselves here may be drawn purely by the nature and scope of the course they are doing, but the Garden State has other attractions, from the Jersey Shore to the proximity of New York City. Since college is probably the student’s first time away from home and the world is now their oyster, it is good to be in a location where some variety is available. Here are some points for students to consider if they want to make the most of their time in the Garden State.

Take in Some of the Sights

Student days can be busy, but even the most diligent of learners should not have their nose to the grindstone all the time. Perhaps you can make the occasional trip to locations mentioned in the songs of Bruce Springsteen and others. Listen to 4th July Asbury Park and you may find yourself wanting to go look for its heroine, Sandy, and see the boardwalk underneath which the narrator sings of chasing the factory girls, or the boys from the casino who “dance with their shirts open like Latin lovers on the shore”. It might be only fiction, but Springsteen’s cast of characters and ability to tell a story make this site worth visiting. On another weekend, who doesn’t want to check out the Big Apple? Even if you’ve done it before with the family, it’s going to be even better with your friends.

Get Your Finances in Order

Trips like this are going to cost a few bucks, of course, which brings us to a key point about the whole student experience: money. With a student loan under your belt, that belt is probably going to be pulled tight and you will be learning about what is and isn’t necessary. Making money can include anything from buying secondhand study books if you can find them (the college may have a stock or check out the social media groups) to learning to cook and saving on meals. 

Carryout meals are an obvious option in that it comes ready to eat and you don’t have much, if anything, to wash up afterwards. If you do a reconnaissance mission in the nearest big food store, you could find better options. Then either you’ve got to heat them up or acquire some basic cooking skills and knock them up from scratch. How are you going to pay for this stuff? 

Everybody in the world seems to have a credit card, and if they can, so can you. Just be careful you get the right one. There are special deals, introductory offers of low interest rates, options with no annual fees, and other benefits, so do some research. Go online and you will find review sites that do the hard work for you. Choose the best card for your needs, not just the one that will give you the most credit, but the one that gives enough but not too much. More borrowing means more paying back and using a credit card is just borrowing at the end of the day.

Make Arrangements with the Bank

Now is the perfect time to get yourself established with a financial record, which will become a credit score (or rating) down the line. The advice here is to take it easy on the spending and set yourself up for life as a trustworthy individual that can receive lending when you really need it.

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