Posts published in December, 2018

Collegepuzzle blog will continue in 2019

Study: College Selectivity Impacts Women’s Odds of Marriage

Study: College Selectivity Impacts Women’s Odds of Marriage

Emma Whitford, IHE via Real Clear Education

A new study indicates that women’s careers and family lives are significantly impacted by the selectivity of the college they choose to attend. These effects are not the same for men.The study, Elite Schools and Opting-In: Effects of College Selectivity on Career and Family Outcomes, was conducted by three economics professors, Suqin Ge at Virginia Tech, Amalia Miller at the University of Virginia and Elliot Isaac at Tulane University, and is being circulated as a white paper by the National Bureau of Economic Research.The researchers utilized data from the College and Beyond Survey, a…

Finding a happy medium between commitment and fun: balancing college life


 Each year, millions of new students converge on college and university grounds, eager to start their journeys as students and future professionals in their chosen fields. Now, as a new influx of eager students prepares to work towards attending college or university, there also comes the inevitable flurry of nerves, of uncertainty. The decision to go to college is undoubtedly one of the most important that a student will ever make, because so much of their future relies on their decision-making process now. It doesn’t just get easier when the first semester starts, either. There will be many periods during a student’s studies where they feel overwhelmed, unsure, even a little afraid of their next steps. It is human nature that we go through periods of chaos – it is these moments that tend to be the pivotal moments in life that lead us to our greater purpose. During intensive assessment periods at university, for example, a student’s decision to lend a hand to their classmate, or refer them to a trusted essay writing help service, can ultimately lead to their choice to become an English professor or a writer themselves.

Structuring a healthy study schedule

Seemingly little moments are strung together and can ultimately have a significant impact on a student’s trajectory during and after college. All the advice that any new college student could ever get simmers down to one core value: accountability. The reality of being a student is that decisions are being made constantly – even if one isn’t consciously aware of it. A good example of this constant decision making ideology is committing time to study. It is one thing to take notes during class (where there are no distractions), but it is another thing entirely to actively made the decision to be accountable for one’s dedication to their studies. Deciding for or against study at any given time is an expression of accountability (or lack thereof, depending on the student in question and their general attitude towards studying); students who make time most days (if not every day) to study at least an hour, for example, tend to have a stronger grasp on their accountability to themselves, than the students who avoid studying until they must cram in a mad rush before finals week.

Finding a happy medium between commitment and fun

Committing time to studying may feel frustrating to some students, but study is an integral part of being a student. Particularly when one is a new student experiencing all the big firsts of life as a college student, it can be tempting to fall into the mindset of “I have plenty of time”, only to figure out too late that the three parties from the last week could have been better spent studying for finals. Students around the world tend to struggle with similar (if not the same) issues, and the age-old issue of scheduled studying is one that is continuously grappled with – particularly for those students who live on campus and are constantly surrounded by the college part culture that has evolved over the years. There is nothing wrong with going to college parties and having fun, but there must be a healthy balance for accountability not to be called into question.

Using college as one long networking event

As a college student, one becomes solely accountable for their actions, words, and responses – this is especially true of students who live on campus or move closer to campus for their studies. There is a fine line between excessive partying and taking the edge off in between bouts of study or shifts at work. The experience of college is not all about the academic aspect of higher education. Aside from study (because no decent college experience is solely about the study), college students should take accountability for their lack of industry knowledge and make conscious actions to amend said lack of industry know-how.

It is fine to not be fully aware of the internships available as a student – most students are not aware, after all – but taking it upon oneself to learn about prospective opportunities and to take the actions to express interest and even apply speaks volumes of one’s commitment to their education and their career beyond graduation. Applying for internships and working on personal projects is not only admirable, but it is highly encouraged, it shows strength of character and willingness to work outside the box, and it plumps up work experience in the field before one has even technically entered the field – all motions that speak to a student’s sense of determination and commitment.

Of all the advice that any new college student could be given, the smartest is likely to be the importance of accountability. Practically every facet in a student’s college experience can be traced back to the sole ideal of accountability. Millions of college students begin their higher education journeys every year and every key decision during their time as a college student is reliant on their sense of personal accountability. From choosing majors and then classes, to committing time to study and applying for and carrying out internships, every action carried out while at college or university ultimately shapes the kind of individual that a student comes to be when graduation rolls around – and thereafter.

Byline – Anton Lucanus is the Director of Neliti. During his college years, he maintained a perfect GPA, was published in a top cancer journal, and received many of his country’s most prestigious undergraduate scholarships. Anton writes for The College Puzzle as a means to guide current students to achieve personal and academic goals

Top 10 Writing Tips for Successful Students


If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve been finding your recent academic assignments a little bit difficult to write. You’re not alone – thousands of students, even successful ones, struggle with getting their essays and research papers done properly. But why academic writing is so hard?

Well, one could say that this kind of writing is a kind of a mysterious and fraught thing. Even many scholars who had mastered the art of research and doing science seek help with making their papers sound like scholar-level writing. Unlike ordinary writing that uses conversational, natural language, academic writing is supposed to be clever, faceless, clear, impersonal, and ambiguous. At the same time, academic writers have to persuade their audience that their projects are objective and deserve attention.

No wonder even psychologists try to explain why it‘s so terrible.

No worries, though. With proper writing advice and knowledge, you can do a great job and get the highest grades regardless of your professor’s demands. If you’re in need for such advice, grab these tips and tools.

It’s time to up your writing game!

  1. Don’t Underestimate the Importance of an Outline

The first thing that you should do before writing your essay or research paper is to make an outline. Essentially, it’s a blueprint, or a plan that will guide your writing, so if you don’t have it, chances are that your paper will fail to deliver a logical flow of information or even a structure.

Besides, making an outline isn’t that difficult. To do that, follow these steps:

  • Identify all the ideas that you need to include in your essay/research paper
  • Group your ideas into categories
  • Sequences the ideas in a logical order to ensure a good flow of information
  • Make headings and subheadings to add some structure (remember: a good outline isn’t a list of ideas but a logical framework).
  1. Make an Argumentative Thesis Statement

Many students make a mistake by making a descriptive thesis that doesn’t reveal their position on the topic being described or summarize the information that’s already known. Since most academic papers are argumentative in nature, thus require the writer to make their position clear, make sure that your thesis shows that by using appropriate language like “should.”

Example: The United States should not switch to the metric system because of far-reaching implications such as the impact on housing, the need to change vehicle production, and other measurements.

  1. Use Strong, Active Verbs

A good usage of verbs can take your academic writing to a whole new level; for example, you can apply action verbs to express actions, modal verbs to express abilities, and auxiliary verbs to reinforce the previous two groups.

Here are some examples of verbs based on their purpose.

Purpose Verbs
To summarize Highlight, evaluate, feature, assess
To state Convey, identify, elaborate
To identify parts Constitute, encompass, compose of, incorporate, comprise
To support a statement Compliment, substantiate, confirm, add, corroborate


  1. Don’t make Long Introductions

A well-written essay has about five sentences including the thesis statement, so going over this limit may undermine the quality of your work. Remember: the purpose of the introduction is to concisely give the background of the topic to prepare the reader for the thesis, and this shouldn’t take a lot of content.

Unless your academic work is complicated and requires you to provide a lot of background, don’t make it too long.

  1. Don’t Forget to Ensure that Your Topic Sentences Connect to Your Thesis

If you have some background in academic writing, you know that thesis statement is the main idea that defines the subsequent parts of an academic work. Thus, if body paragraphs of your essay/research paper are not connected to it somehow, it means that your paper lacks a clear focus.

  1. It’s Okay to Use Help

Let’s just come up and be honest here: academic writing is hard. So, if you’re struggling to research or write a paper or simply don’t have sufficient time to complete everything, it’s okay to get some help. Below, find some good online tools for you.

  • UK Best Essays. Get help with proofreading your academic works and ensure appropriate style and tone from some of the best British writers.
  • Assignment Writing Service. Use this tool if you’re struggling with writing complex academic works such as research papers and dissertations.
  • EssayWritingLab. Academic writing experts from EssayWritingLab can help to make sure that your essays meet your professor’s requirements with professional proofreading and editing.
  • A popular service in Australia, this tool specializes in academic writing assistance for students of colleges and universities.
  • com. Need advice with an essay topic? Don’t know how to approach a topic from the right angle? SchlarAdvisor is the place to go for answers to such requests.
  • net. Australian writers who are professionals at academic research and writing can help you to complete even the most difficult academic writing project.
  • AssignmentGeek. Get your own tutor for your academic writing needs to ensure that your essays and research papers are as good as they can possibly be.
  • Essay Geek. Want to get your paper proofread by a professional with years of experience in academic writing? This tool was created just for that.
  • Aussiewritings. Get help with using scholar resources, referencing, citation styles, and tips on avoiding plagiarism.
  • Essay Writing Land. Use this tool to get a personalized report on your academic work and a professional assessment of your writing skills.
  1. Use Transitional Phrases

Transitional words and phrases like Moreover, On the other hand, In contrast, and At the same time are a perfect way to guide your reader from one idea to another. Use them within your academic work’s body paragraphs to help your writing flow more naturally. This way, you’ll avoid leaping from one thought to the next, which can make your writing a bit confusing.


Hopefully these tips were helpful for you to improve your academic writing style and become a more successful student. Remember, becoming a great academic writer isn’t something that happens overnight, so be patient and don’t forget to learn more.

Tom Jager is a professional blogger based in London. He covers topics related to digital marketing, blogging, social media and business in general. He is always seeking to discover new ways for  professional and personal growth.

The Importance of Work Experience for Students


Dr. Andrew R. Nimmich and Eliza Morrison Nimmich

When you graduate, employers prefer to see more than just 4.0 GPA on your resume. Work experience and references are extremely important. Every break from school presents an opportunity for students to seek professional experiences to add to their resumes. Most companies, regardless of their size, prefer employing someone that has worked in the past and has at least one reference to vouch for them. It shows that you’re a hard worker, you’re determined and you’re disciplined, which are skills that employers want in their employees. It may also show that you wake up in time to make it to work!

If you consistently seek out internships during your school breaks or even while school is in session, then your cumulative work experience may add up to a year or more and perhaps even before you graduate, you may be able to apply to jobs that require you to have one or two years of work experience.

Consider the following when looking for an internship:


  1. Research early

Write a list of the skills that you want to develop and use that list to pinpoint which companies to apply to. Some companies that don’t pay offer much more value in what you’ll learn so for now, pick the value of work experience over pay when identifying places to intern.

  1. Career counselor

At times trying to figure out where to intern can be confusing. Talk to your career counselor. They won’t tell you what to do but they’ll help you figure out where your interests lie and which direction you should move in when seeking relevant internship experiences.



  1. Student placement office

This office exists solely to help you get an internship or a job and yet you’ll find there are students that don’t even know it exists. At times, companies offer the placement office internship positions or inform them of job vacancies, so may miss a wonderful opportunity if you neglect to visit this office.



  1. Talk to your lecturers

Your lecturers have a wide network with institutions in the field that they teach in. Start talking to them early enough and find out whether they’d be willing to connect you. The power of networking is immeasurable.



  1. LinkedIn

Besides the traditional method of applying for jobs via LinkedIn, look for key people in the industry that you’re applying to and click connect on the profiles. When you click connect, LinkedIn offers you the chance to send a note of 300 characters. Use this to introduce yourself and ask for them to be your mentor or even apply for an internship.



  1. Join a networking club

Join a club like AISEC. According to their website, “AIESEC is an international leadership organization that arranges internships and social projects for young people to go abroad.”

A club like AISEC will give you lots of exposure and it’s a major boost to your CV.



  1. Go to Offices


Visit the companies that you hope to work with and talk to the receptionist or HR. Become friends with them. Find out what the requirements are to get an internship at their company. Drop a hard copy of your CV if it’s allowed.


  1. Apprenticeship programs

Companies like Deloitte offer an earn-while-you-learn higher apprenticeship. Irrespective of whether you’re in an undergraduate or graduate program, they have internships for different levels. Be sure to be on the look for such opportunities. The experienced gained, and lessons learned are priceless, and will certainly make your resume standout from those who have not sought out relevant work or internship opportunities.



About the author: Andrew is a co-founder of Tutor the People, and a graduate of Boston University School of Medicine. When he’s not doing surgery, he helps pre-meds find the best MCAT tutor, as well as students who hope to apply to other graduate programs, such as an MBA, JD, PhD, or more. Making yourself standout whether on applications to schools or on job resumes requires more than high test scores. That is where Andrew helps out.

College Esports: Guide to Scholarships

By Martha Karn

When people hear about college sports scholarships, they typically think of football, baseball, tennis, and any number of other sports you play with a team outside. Not too many people know that colleges also offer scholarships for competitive, organized video game sports called Esports. Here are six tips for obtaining an esport scholarship.

  1. Research– You need to do your research to find institutions offering esports scholarships. University of California-Berkeley, Ashland University, Columbia College, Averett University, University of Utah offer these scholarships. The full list can be found here and here. You may end up going to a school you had not previously considered because of its scholarship offerings. The sizes of the scholarships vary both by institutions and within institutions depending upon certain variables. You want to be sure you are getting the scholarship that will fit your needs.

    2. Clubs – If you can, either form or become active in a high school esports club. This will give you an idea of what will be expected from you when you get your scholarship and will prepare you for balancing esports and your academics. All scholarships are based on merit, academics, and athletics. You will have to keep your grades up in order to be considered for and keep your scholarship. Your investment in a club will also show recruiters that you are experienced and invested in esports.

    3. Tournaments – Along with becoming active in an esports club, you should participate in tournaments to attract recruiters from colleges offering scholarships. You can also create leagues within your high school and invite other high schools to participate. Colleges will not be bothered to set up tournaments, but they may send recruiters out to meet potential scholarship recipients.

    4. Network – If you are involved with a high school esports club, you will be likely be competing in tournaments and related activities. When you are at these events, make sure to introduce yourself to other gamers, officials, recruiters and others. You may just find yourself talking to a recruiter from a university you are interested in. The more people who know you, the better chance of obtaining a scholarship.

    5. Join YEA or HSEL – If you do not know how to set up tournaments or are too busy, you can join YEA. They have tournaments across the country at many different levels. HSELis backed by the National Association of Collegiate Esports and has tournaments across the nation as well. Either group will get you into tournaments without your having to host them. This way you are just competing and do not have to worry about the logistics of actually hosting a tournament.

    6. Create content – Once you have started competing, you will need to create content to show recruiters. Start out with a brief introduction that includes your name, gamer tag, rankings, GPA, and graduation year. Follow that with four of your best plays to lead up to the highlight. Do not make your video longer than two minutes. When you have your video complete, highlight it on social media. The more that is out there, the more chances a recruiter will become interested.

    7. Tryouts – When you make it to the tryout level remember three things: Highlight your attitude, communication, and team play. Show potential recruiters that you have what it takes to be a team player with a winning attitude and competence. Show your coaches that you can maintain your position and effectively communicate to your teammates. Become a leader, but do not showboat. If you run off on your own, you will not impress the coaches and you will not receive a scholarship.

    8. Academics – Remember that gaming is only one aspect of the scholarship. You must keep up your grades in high school and maintain them through college to receive and renew your esports scholarship. The better your grades, the more likely you are to receive a scholarship.


Martha Karn develops online educational courses and writes for students.


Guide to Building a Rock Solid Relationship with Your Teachers


Your English teacher always corrects your grammar. Your mathematics teacher urges you to improve your mental-math skills. I understand that it’s not easy to consider these grade-givers as real and ordinary people. But trust me, they binge on ice-cream, cheer for their favourite sports team and enjoy movies just like you do.

Thus, it’s no rocket science to build and maintain a good bond with your teachers. In fact it is very important for you to do so. Don’t forget, the letters of recommendation from your teachers will play a crucial role when you apply for higher studies or jobs in future. And, even if you put that aside, a teacher who remembers you and loves to keep to keep in touch even after you graduate out of college is like the sweetest thing ever.

You don’t have to shower your teachers with superfluous compliments, or with exorbitant presents like a pearl necklace to build a relationship with them. Nor would you have to be a pet and keep running after them. You can maintain your strong demeanour and individuality and still make a bond with your teachers which is perhaps for life. Here we have a few tips for to gradually build a bond.

  • Be courteous and respectful at all times

You have to show that you are enthusiastic about the subject and lessons if you wish to get into the good books of your teachers. Always maintain punctuality and good attendance for the classes and show a lot of energy and involvement while the class is in progress. Don’t forget your teachers work really hard to prepare for a lecture and try their best to share their knowledge with you. So they obviously appreciate it when you acknowledge their efforts. Contribute to the lectures by asking questions, sharing your views and taking down the notes.


  • Keep in touch with your teachers outside the classroom as well

Teachers are often bound by constraints of time and a strict professional protocol while they are lecturing in the class. If you approach them outside the class, you might be surprised to see that they are a lot more chilled out and friendlier. Interact with them about lessons you have doubts about or seek a little additional help for your weak sections. To keep it even more informal, strike a conversation about any upcoming college events or extra-curricular activities or ask for his/her feedback about your progress in the class.


  • Always try to stay one step ahead of others

It is important that you demonstrate that you are willing to walk the extra mile to excel in class. Always come with with some background of the lesson to be started before you arrive in class so as to be able to ask out-of-the-box and meaningful questions or go back after a lesson and do some additional research and raise some interesting questions in the next class. Trust me, not only will this get you the attention of your teacher, but will also put a great deal of pressure on your peers *winks*.


  • Take voluntary responsibilities and initiatives

Be active and full of energy in and outside the class. Show eagerness to lead or organize teams, to organize college events, to participate in cultural activities or to represent your college. Demonstrate that you are taking your college life seriously (which you actually should) are extremely excited to be the face of the college. Also, when you take up the responsibilities, you have to ensure that you deliver them with utmost perfection, so as to establish yourself as a competent and reliable student. And trust me, from the next time onwards, the teacher would call for you on her own.


  • Share your academic plans and goals with your teacher

A teacher always finds it amusing to interact with students who are smart and ambitious, ad who are passionate about their careers. So discuss what you intend to do in life with them, open up your heart about your future plans, take advices from them, ask them questions about what’s the best approach to fulfil your dreams and so on. This makes your teacher feel that you value their knowledge and expertise, and also that they hold a special place in your lives so as to be told about your personal plans.


  • Observe our peers who share a good bond with the teachers

Good observation is key to improvement and subsequent success in any front of life. So you need to keep your eyes and ears wide open. Keep an eye on your peers who have managed to build positive relationship with your teachers. Listen to what they do and talk about, or how they approach the teachers. This would give you an idea about what your teachers like and dislike, would reveal their areas of interests, and would surface their personalities. This would make it easier for you to shape your modify your behaviour and code of conduct.


You have to understand and accept that your teachers are there for you even beyond your homework, and there’s so much more to talk to them about other than your subject matters. There direct presence and involvement in your life can shape you as smarter adults, and at times can be a guardian who is there for you at all times. So go ahead, and take the first step towards building an enviable bond with your teacher.


Samantha Brown is a freelance writer who specializes on carrier guidance, she is also motivational speaker and author




5 Ways to Earn Money Online while at College


Ask almost any student what makes him most anxious and unsure about the future, and nine times out of ten the answer would be “student debt.” The reasons are obvious – tuition costs keep growing while getting a higher education is no longer a surefire guarantee of landing a good job after graduation. As a result, many graduates find themselves neck-deep in debt and with no prospects of employment. If this is what you fear, you should start taking measures early on, while you are still at college – you still have time to improve your financial position and chip away at the debt. In this article, we will cover some ways you can legally earn money online without it affecting your studies too much.

1.    Take online surveys

This method is one of the most accessible because it doesn’t require any special skills. Just sign up with one of many websites dealing with these things and start taking surveys. Each survey you successfully complete will earn you points that you can later exchange for money. The good thing about it is that you can do a little bit of work whenever you feel like it or have some time to kill, without any need for preparation. The bad thing is that some surveys may be pretty time-consuming. Also, try to stick to well-reputed websites that are known to pay regularly.

2.    An eBay or Etsy store

Starting your own online store via websites like eBay or Etsy is not only one of the easiest but also one of the most profitable ways to make money on the side – at least if you take it seriously and apply a little bit of ingenuity and effort. One approach is to resell vintage or slightly used items found in thrift shops and garage sales – however, it requires the ability to recognize genuine vintage items and an eye for the things that will sell good. If you are good at making things with your own hands you may try to sell what you make via Etsy – just visit this website and take a look at the stuff people successfully sell, and you will get an idea if you can do the same.

3.    Get paid for using Google

This won’t bring you much, but on the flipside, it doesn’t require you to do anything you don’t already normally do. Sign up with Qmee, install a particular plugin for your browser, and from that moment on you will be rewarded for simply running searches in Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Every time you run a search, you may see a few sponsored results alongside normal ones – simply click them and start collecting your rewards.

4.    Get paid for testing websites

This one may take a little bit of your time, but it is an excellent way to put small periods of free time you inevitably keep getting to good use. Sign up with a service like UserTesting and start reviewing websites assigned to you. Each review won’t take you longer than 20 minutes and pay about $10. It is fast, it is easy, and who knows, perhaps you will stumble upon some really interesting websites.

5.    Get paid for doing stuff online

There is a plethora of services offering you to get paid for doing all kinds of stuff online – watching videos, surfing, visiting websites and so on. The most popular and well-reputed of them are probably SwagBucks and Toluna – try them out if you want guaranteed results.

Most of these methods are something you can do in your free time – they are not much individually, but together they can help you steadily get the much-needed cash.

Melissa Burns graduated from the faculty of Journalism of Iowa State University. Nowadays she is an entrepreneur and independent journalist. Follow her @melissaaburns or contact at

8 Cheap Hobbies for College Students


When you are in college you can become consumed with classes, research papers, and studying. Your brain will be functioning non-stop and you could end up harming yourself with stress. One way to relieve stress while attending college is by picking up a hobby. Here are eight cheap hobbies for college students.


  1. Learn Calligraphy – This is a fun hobby that you can use for decorations and gifts. Calligraphy supplies are as simple as specialized pens and paper. Once you have mastered this hobby you can earn money by created specialized invitations and cards.


  1. Juggling – The art of juggling will help you with your balance and hand eye coordination. It is a fun hobby that will impress your friends. All you need are small beanbags. Check out some online videos or books about juggling and you will be moving four or five bags through the air in no time.


  1. Playing pool – This is a relaxing hobby that is inexpensive. Usually colleges will have a pool table on campus. “Even if you are just a beginner you can enjoy this game. It can be played solo or with friends. Practicing is what will help you advance, but there are also informative videos and resources online, to teach you the tricks to playing pool,” says an expert from Home Leisure Direct.


  1. Origami – While this may sound simple it is not. Origami is the art of folding paper into different shapes. You need to focus on your project and follow complex directions. There are inexpensive origami kits available with paper that folds well. You can also find books and videos to help you learn this ancient art.


  1. Kite Building – This is a fun hobby that you can take with you anywhere. You can fly a kite in your yard, at the beach, in the mountains, in a park, and elsewhere. You can find easy to assemble kites that are not too expensive, or you can learn to build your own kite out of different materials. Kite building can be a stress release along with kite flying. Once you get your kite in the air you can learn how to make it swoop and dive. Flying a kite is a nice way to spend an afternoon away from your studies.


  1. Learn a new card game – Playing cards is a relaxing hobby that you can do with friends or by yourself. There are literally thousands of different games out there to learn and a deck of cards is very inexpensive. You can find books of card games at your local library, or you can look up card games online. Wherever you find them, this hobby will help keep you stress free and happy.


  1. Write poetry – Poetry is a very personalized hobby that you can do anywhere. There is virtually no cost and you can be your own judge. There are many different styles of poetry that you can try and emulate. Read some poems and then try and create your own poems or just wing it with free verse. You can write about your life or anything you want to. If you get good at writing poetry you may even get published one day.


  1. Whittling – The only things you need for this hobby are a knife and a stick. You can create intricate crafts with this hobby that you can eventually sell. There are tutorials online and books you can read to help you get started with whittling. Experiment with different types of wood and thickness of sticks to create different sculptures.


Having a hobby in college can help divert you from your studies for a few hours. Hobbies will help you with stress and let you relax and have some fun.


Jane Hurst has been working in education for over 5 years as a teacher. She loves sharing her knowledge with students, is fascinated about ed tech and loves reading, a lot. Follow Jane on Twitter.


10 Things You Can Do During Your Holiday Break


You made it through the semester and you are looking for something to do during your winter break. You could hang around with friends and blow off your responsibilities or you could use this time to better prepare for your future. Here are ten things you can do during your holiday break that will help you with your studies and career.

1. Internship
You should try and get an internship during the holidays. This will both bolster your knowledge in your chosen field and look good on your resume. Employees may be willing to extend your internship over the summer and eventually bring you on board if you perform well during winter break.

2. Research another country
This is your down time so you can choose what you want to research. Finding out about another country can expand your horizons and make you more knowledgeable overall. You may even want to visit that country during the summer. You can take your winter break to research everything about a country including its cuisine and history.

3. Watch educational videos
We all know that YouTube is filled with cat videos but it also contains educational videos. Take some time during your winter break to watch some educational videos. It is always a good time to learn something new and exciting.

4. Resume
Take this time to look at your resume and make sure it is up to date. Include any activities you participated in during school and any jobs you may have held. If you took any honors classes list them. Any classes pertaining to your career should be highlighted.

5. Summer school
Yes, it is winter, but now is the time to be thinking about taking summer classes. You can take this time to research a school like the Oxford Summer School and submit your applications. The sooner you apply the sooner you will cement your summer plans. Take your time and do your research now so you are not rushing mid-way through Spring semester trying to meet deadlines.

6. Personal Webpage
If you do not have one, create a personal webpage. This is one of the newest things potential employers are looking at when they are considering you for a position. Along with your resume this is a valuable tool that you can use to show your potential employers what you are made of. Make it pop and add some videos and pictures.

7. Volunteer
During your winter break there are plenty of places that need volunteers. You can do something valuable for others and feel good about your break. Volunteering also looks good on your resume. Employers are looking for well-rounded people and showing you care about something will help them see you as more than two dimensional.

8. Next Semester
Yes, it is winter break, but you want to start the next semester running. Start planning your classes and schedule ahead of time. You should already be enrolled and know your schedule so take advantage of that and plan when you will be working on papers and when your down time will be. Do not forget to schedule in down time so you do not end up stressed out during the semester.

9. Start eating healthy
Now is the time to start some healthy eating habits that will extend into your next semester. Eating healthy will keep you less stressed and help build up your immune system so you do not get sick while you are in school. Eating healthy food will help your brain function better and you will have a better semester overall.

10. Learn a soft skill
You want your future employers to know you are able to take on anything that might come your way. Take an online course on public speaking or business writing so you will be ready for anything. Whether it is your boss asking you to speak in front of a crowd or write a letter to promote sales, you will be ready.


Lorraine McKinney is an academic tutor and e learning specialist.