What I wish someone would have told me my senior year

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With graduation coming in a few short months, students are looking at colleges across the United States and trying to figure out which college would be the best choice for them as they look to further their college education.  As I look back over the past two years, I can think of a few things that I wish someone older told me:

Debt Is Not A Necessity

The basis of the blog is my goal of making it through college with under $10,000 of debt.  Two years ago, as I mentioned before, I was planning on heading to Grace College.  While I did have the sticker price down under $13,000 a year, I still would have ended up with well over $50,000 of debt for four years.  I considered Ohio State University, but even there, I would have ended up with more than $30,000 of debt.

As I look back at those plans, I realize how much that debt would have played in me not being able to pursue my dreams without the cloud of debt over my head.  Currently, I have about $2400 of debt and am getting ready to send my first check to knock out a bit of that loan.  I’m well on my way to getting through school with under $10,000 of debt.

It Is Possible to Work and Go to School (and, I recommend it)

Currently, I am employed at a grocery store part-time, while going to school as a full-time student.  Throughout this, I have learned a few interesting things:

  1. Groceries are expensive.  Even though grocery prices are falling, I am amazed at just how much money goes to buying food.  I know have a much deeper respect for those that are able to save hundreds of dollars a month on their grocery shopping.
  2. Working for my education has given me a greater respect of my education.  Because I am paying for my education, I work harder because I know that if I were to fail a class, I am the one who has to repay to take the class again.

Friendships are important

While I have learned to meet new people and have even become friends with some of them, I have realized just how important friendships are.  As I mentioned in Why so Little Debt?, I am trying to get through college with under $10,000 of debt, so that I can give money freely to my friends who want to go and change the world.

Because we are all within a four hour drive of each other, it makes it easy for us to get together and hear the successes we are having in our schooling and the career opportunities that we may have and how we can help each other through that.  Through this all, we learn about each other a little more and can understand how we may be able to help each other out financially.

In saying all of this, please hold on to your friendships from high school.  You never know when you are going to need them.

What next?

If you have already graduated from high school, what is one thing that you wish someone told you?

If you are a high school student, what is one question you have about college?

If you are graduated from college, what is one thing that you wish someone told you before you graduated and entered the “real world?”

Let me know in the comments

Link of the Week

I was asked to write a guest post over at CreditShout.  You can check out Credit Cards from a Students Perspective and let me know what you think.

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About Zach Younkin

I'm currently enrolled at Western Governors University, pursuing my degree in Accounting. I'm hoping that this blog provides you with some encouragement to be what God has promised you. This blog collects dust, which is unfortunate. Keep your eyes open for some sporadic blog posts. I spend more time on Twitter, so go follow me there. @zachyounkin
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7 Responses to What I wish someone would have told me my senior year

  1. Gary Underwood says:

    Zach – great stuff… You know I'm a Grace College grad, and grateful for that, but… if I had it to do all over again, I might go your route and minimize debt. Same goes for Seminary. You are learning self-discipline and long-term financial principles that will help you immensely over the long haul. Praise God! Keep up the blogging and stuff too!

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  4. Austin says:

    I graduated from college in June and I wish someone would've told me to only allow a certain amount of time for tasks like papers and studying. I wasted so much time saying "I should study" or worrying about studying when I could've spent that time doing other more productive or fun things.

    Hey Zach, do you have an About section so I can check out your store?

    Thanks,
    Austin @ Foreigner's Finances
    My recent post FF Link Roundup – February 2010

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