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Old 09-19-2012, 01:30 AM   #31
disykat
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Thoughts on the subject, not really on the OP because haven't given spending money. We may at some point have this issue, since my youngest's savings account isn't going real well.

My kids worked/are working summers in high school so they had a head start on spending money. We don't expect working during the school year, but it's certainly a bonus.

Just wanted to chime in about on-campus jobs with a suggestion not too many people think about. When I was in college, after working one semester in food service I was able to get on the banquet list. That meant I could sign up when I wanted to work according to my own schedule - could be twice a week, could be twice a month, it didn't matter to them. I encouraged my college student to look for that kind of job. He's just starting his second year and is on the "events parking" list. In addition to "events," tell your students to look for catering, babysitting, etc. opportunities where you can just take one time jobs.
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:00 AM   #32
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General annoyance about a misconception I think my parents' generation often has with the way college is now:

People often compare college life to the way it was decades ago with no idea what they are talking about, particularly if one had a bit of a fluffy degree and they're trying to push their habits onto someone with a very rigorous major.

School was cheaper then. Less credits were required for a degree. Things have changed and not working because there are simply too many classes is not being lazy imho.

As an undergrad I took 18 credits most semesters because engineering has a LOT of classes. I had about 20 credits more in required classes than my friends with other classes and that is a courseload where I already came in with some AP credit for general ed requirements or I would have had to take even more.

So that's roughly 18 hours of class a week unless one of them is a lab which could add an extra 2. There's a rule of thumb which our professors told us day one where you should spend 3 hours prepping/homework/studying for every hour in class and that was completely true for my major. So add 54 hours on. Actually, even go as low as 30 extra hours a week for the exceptional student. That's 48-72 hours for a 7 day week just on classwork for the clever to average student. It's already a full a time job and yes some people can tack on an extra 10-20 hours for a part time job but I don't think it's unreasonable that a lot can't and shouldn't. It just really bothers me when people act like college is some trivial thing. If you're doing it right, it's not.
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:35 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fyrefly View Post
General annoyance about a misconception I think my parents' generation often has with the way college is now:

People often compare college life to the way it was decades ago with no idea what they are talking about, particularly if one had a bit of a fluffy degree and they're trying to push their habits onto someone with a very rigorous major.

School was cheaper then. Less credits were required for a degree. Things have changed and not working because there are simply too many classes is not being lazy imho.

As an undergrad I took 18 credits most semesters because engineering has a LOT of classes. I had about 20 credits more in required classes than my friends with other classes and that is a courseload where I already came in with some AP credit for general ed requirements or I would have had to take even more.

So that's roughly 18 hours of class a week unless one of them is a lab which could add an extra 2. There's a rule of thumb which our professors told us day one where you should spend 3 hours prepping/homework/studying for every hour in class and that was completely true for my major. So add 54 hours on. Actually, even go as low as 30 extra hours a week for the exceptional student. That's 48-72 hours for a 7 day week just on classwork for the clever to average student. It's already a full a time job and yes some people can tack on an extra 10-20 hours for a part time job but I don't think it's unreasonable that a lot can't and shouldn't. It just really bothers me when people act like college is some trivial thing. If you're doing it right, it's not.
I agree completely. I have a freshman who is a business major with two minors. She is taking her max credits this first semester and what you said for hours spent of study and prep time is exactly what she's been told and has been doing. The more rigorous the schedule and competitive the school the more effort is required. Then add in getting involved with clubs at school and there is not a ton of free time. My D has joined the gymnastics club to keep up skills as well as a club that raises seeing eye dogs at her school. It's made the difference with her settling in to school. Add in time for tutoring and group studies and I'm giving her $30 a week to cover incidentals including club fees and dues. D worked all summer and saved a ton of money so there is extra there if a school trip comes up or a concert. If the right job comes up for her, (prob something in the school or something a professor refers her to) then she can see if it works out for her and take it.
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:02 AM   #34
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We give our kids way more than what any of you have posted. However, they do not live at home. They have off-campus apartments and they do not have the meal plan. The money I put into their checking accounts each week goes to cover everything from food to toiletries to school supplies and activity fees.

I think $10/week is way too low for a young adult. There are 8-year-olds who get more allowance. You cannot even buy a movie ticket for $10 anymore. But the amount that you give your kids is subject to what you expect them to pay for with their "spending money" and what your family can afford to give them.

Personally, I would rather give my kids what they need to get by during their college years instead of insisting that they take on jobs while in school. Their first job is to graduate and it's a heck of a lot cheaper in the long run to pay for their extras for 4 years than it is to pay for 1 or 2 additional semesters (tuition + living expenses) because having a job prevented them from being able to complete their course load in 4 years.
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:26 AM   #35
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My son works during the summer for his spending money. He's a lifeguard. He doesn't work when college is in session. My DD will go to college next year, we expect her to earn her spending money in the summer too.

They have to make it last. This is when talk about budgeting came up. If you have $2000 to last you 10 months, how much does that mean you can spend each week? Not sure if he's sticking to a budget, but we at least talked about the need for one. (We pay for a meal plan and we buy him essentials when he's at home, like shampoo, bottled water, TP, etc).

I worked during college, part-ttime at a department store to earn my money both during school and in the summer (when I got more hours).

Last edited by HM; 09-19-2012 at 07:32 AM.
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:56 AM   #36
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This is just a general answer and not direct towards the OP because she already gave answers to some of these questions, but in general... It Depends!
  • Are the students away at school or home?
  • Are they living in a dorm where their meals are covered 7 days a week?
  • What is there social life at school?

When I was in school, I worked summers and a part-time job in a computer lab. I was in a fraternity and was responsible for my "social fees". I was also responsible for my weekend meals since the meal plan at the fraternity only covered Monday through Friday. I also had a car and had to pay for my own gas and insurance.

If she can get a part-time job on campus that is not very demanding (i.e. a computer lab, library, etc.) That would probably be good as they would probably allow her to study during work hours if her assistance is not required.

Also, I don't know how severe her learning disability is, but as for taking longer to read and take exams, I know the feeling. I absolutely despise reading and I am always the last one to leave the classroom during an exam. I am pretty sure I have ADD, although I have never been diagnosed. I am currently in the early stages of a PhD program, so I'm sure she will do just fine.

One thing that has really helped me, which unfortunately I only recently discovered, was getting soft copies of text books and having the computer read to me. I am an auditory learner, so I find I can cover the material quicker and have a better retention. I have a Mac, so that feature is built in, but I'm sure there is Windows software you can get to do the same thing.
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Old 09-19-2012, 08:19 AM   #37
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spending money

We took over DD cell phone payment of $30 a month and put $25 in her account each week. She lives on campus. Last night she was talking about buying some new cloths, I told her to wait till her birthday (Nov) and Christmas. She has always been very responsible and has quite a bit of money in her account from working and knows she needs to go back to her job during Christmas and summer break.
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:04 AM   #38
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My parents paid for my college, books, dorm, meal plan, etc. I was not allowed to get a job - school was my job. However, I was expected to work full time over all breaks, and that money was my spending money (mostly waitressing).
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Old 09-19-2012, 09:16 AM   #39
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I keep seeing people mention working in the summers because students won't be in class, do other states not have mandatory summer classes? My school mandated a certain number of summer courses and they were a lot harder than my regular school year classes. I think I was busier in the summer than regular semesters often. Also some majors run year round, but I'm sure that varies by program.

Oh and my best college job was being an RA. Paid room and board and a little extra for really not that much work.
No, mandatory summer classes aren't a typical thing -- at least not for most majors. Some of the big-deal scholarships offer paid travel opportunities during the summer, but that's not really a widespread thing. My daughter is a nursing major, and she'll have a mandatory summer school class at the end of the summer before she begins her student nursing as a junior; however, it's a five-week course, leaving more than half the summer free.

I was an RA too, and it was one of the best things I did financially during my college years.
Quote:
Originally Posted by disykat View Post
Just wanted to chime in about on-campus jobs with a suggestion not too many people think about. When I was in college, after working one semester in food service I was able to get on the banquet list. That meant I could sign up when I wanted to work according to my own schedule - could be twice a week, could be twice a month, it didn't matter to them. I encouraged my college student to look for that kind of job. He's just starting his second year and is on the "events parking" list. In addition to "events," tell your students to look for catering, babysitting, etc. opportunities where you can just take one time jobs.
Yes, campuses offer lots of opportunities like that. One that a couple of my friends had back when I was in college was writing parking tickets. They agreed to work X number of hours /write X number of tickets each week, and they could choose their own hours. So if they had an hour to kill between classes, they could walk through the commuter lot and "work" for that one hour.

Opportunities exist, but students do have to search for them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fyrefly View Post
General annoyance about a misconception I think my parents' generation often has with the way college is now:

People often compare college life to the way it was decades ago with no idea what they are talking about, particularly if one had a bit of a fluffy degree and they're trying to push their habits onto someone with a very rigorous major.

School was cheaper then. Less credits were required for a degree. Things have changed and not working because there are simply too many classes is not being lazy imho.

As an undergrad I took 18 credits most semesters because engineering has a LOT of classes. I had about 20 credits more in required classes than my friends with other classes and that is a courseload where I already came in with some AP credit for general ed requirements or I would have had to take even more.

So that's roughly 18 hours of class a week unless one of them is a lab which could add an extra 2. There's a rule of thumb which our professors told us day one where you should spend 3 hours prepping/homework/studying for every hour in class and that was completely true for my major. So add 54 hours on. Actually, even go as low as 30 extra hours a week for the exceptional student. That's 48-72 hours for a 7 day week just on classwork for the clever to average student. It's already a full a time job and yes some people can tack on an extra 10-20 hours for a part time job but I don't think it's unreasonable that a lot can't and shouldn't. It just really bothers me when people act like college is some trivial thing. If you're doing it right, it's not.
Your generation can be "generally annoyed" as long as mine can find your thought process a bit naive.

You're absolutely right that school was more affordable then, but I can't agree with much else. Decades ago people took 18-hour semesters so they could graduate on time, people enrolled in time-consuming labs, classes were tough then too, and people chose challenging majors then too. The "three hours outside class" rule was oft-touted in the 80s, just as it is now -- and it is good advice. Add in that no one owned a computer, so communication and research was much less "instant". The college world isn't nearly so new and different as you believe.

Having lived through my college years and seeing my daugther begin college, I do think she felt more pressure during the application process, and although she didn't have to worry about the money, I think most of her classmates worry about it more than my generation did -- but her overall experience doesn't seem to be more or less difficult academically than mine was. The biggest difference seems to be that technology has made a number of things much easier; registration is one example. Whereas registration for me was literally an all-day affair, and I spent the whole day standing in various lines trying to get into classes, she punches a few numbers into the computer and completes her registration in minutes. Some things are much easier these days, other things are more difficult -- but really, the stress level and the work level haven't changed all that much.

Whether a student works or not is dependant upon a number of variables: Where he's living, his personal spending habits, his appetite (my daughter's RA told her that girls often have trouble using up all their meal plan money, whereas they guys run out of food money in November), how much his parents are willing to give him, whether he has a girlfriend . . . But I can't buy into the "it's so different now" argument.
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Old 09-19-2012, 01:24 PM   #40
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I still get the same allowance my sisters get- $20 a week. I usually spend it all on gas for my car, since I'm home quite often for craft shows and such. When I'm at home, I do the same chores my sisters do to 'earn' my money.
I also have an on campus job that pays for other expenses. My freshman year, my $20 went towards things like going out, miscellanious groceries, etc, and it was more than enough.
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Old 09-19-2012, 01:50 PM   #41
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My dad gives my sister $400 a month for spending money.
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Old 09-19-2012, 03:55 PM   #42
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I had no idea this thread was still going...haven't been getting notifications. But lots of good conversation here.

I know $10 seems low, but the college offers lots of activities that are free to students (paid for by their activity fees), so she has those things she can go to without cost (football games, Friday night movies at are 'second' run type movies, free bowling on Saturday nights, and many other events throughout the semester).

My husband works on campus so she stops in his office in the afternoon and picks up a water bottle and snacks that he keeps there.

She comes home for lunch every day and dinner at night.

So basically just wanting to give her the chance to go out to lunch with a friend once a week or something like that. If she orders water, she should be able to do that on $10.

I guess I want her to learn to be 'frugal' but also let her have a little fun. And for special occasions I would give her a little extra (like next week, the Christian group both girl joined is having a Barn dance for $5 a person, and I am going to give them each $5 for that).

And I do hope she can work all next summer. This past summer she had a job but they barely ever scheduled her, it was so frustrating...so she did a lot of volunteer work at church camp and helping a soccer team...but of course that didn't help her budget.

Our area doesn't have a lot of jobs, so that makes it hard.

So anyway, it is interesting reading everyone's response. Glad to know not everyone is working during college. I do think it is good, and she did look at jobs on campus but they seemed to be for the work study program and she didn't qualify for that.

She is working in a fund raiser this Saturday to help cover the cost of her one club she joined (picking up trash after the football game). So she is trying to help.....and we want to see that 'effort', but we also want to make sure that she can handle school.

In our last meeting at high school with the resource room they suggested we have her take a low class load and give her more time to complete her degree. And we agree with this. When it takes you twice as long to read as everyone else, you need to take a lighter load. But it is still a lot of work for her. But she seems to be doing OK so far. Just don't want to help her reach her goals.

Again...thanks everyone! Lots of good information here We are new to being college parents so it is nice to talk to others who have been through it.
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Old 09-19-2012, 04:20 PM   #43
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I might sound mean to you, but I don't give my college kids ANY spending money, and they have to work in the summer to contribute to their expenses
That's what we did for our kids. If they work all summer to get spending money for the school year, then they don't have to work during the semester and you don't have to worry about them not studying enough!
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Old 09-19-2012, 04:31 PM   #44
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My DD has a credit card from our Master Card account for her spending (even though she lives at home while attending college). She does have $$$ in her own checking accout, and she uses it for "fun expenses" (she doesn't go out much honestly though, and when she does, she doesn't spend much). We are more than happy to cover her expenses (even the fun ones...I often tell her to just use my CC to pay, and she usually protests...but I love being able to spoil her a little bit..nothing extravagent; she doesn't have extravagant taste) because she's a straight A student, extremely focused and responsible, and we don't want her to work...we want her to focus on her studies while she's in school. So, in summary, we'd give her whatever she needs, and are blessed that we are in a financial position to do so. She doesn't take advantage of it though...never has, and I can't imagine she ever will. She was raised in a frugal household (as was I), and has turned out to be more frugal than me (which I often tease her about).
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Old 09-19-2012, 04:45 PM   #45
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My problem also is my girls are twins, only one has the learning disability, but if I give one money I will have to give the other money too. My other daughter has a job. The one did have a job, but we could see she needed to drop it.

Just trying to figure out this year.
I didn't get a chance to read through all the posts. But I wanted to share how I work it with my DD18 and DS17. DD18 is a freshman in college. She has learning disabilities and we really do not want her to work at all right now and just focus on school, at least this first semester and maybe the whole year. DS17 is a senior in high school.

My deal with my DS17 is that I will give him $30 a week as long as he gives me his entire paycheck for me to bank. He wants a car next year. Sometimes I get the shortend of the stick when his check doesn't cover the $30 a week, but it usually does and then some. $30 may seem like a lot, but it also includes his gas money (can't believe it is at $4 a gallon). Occasionally there have been times when he needed extra money like toward the end of the summer his friends went to an amusement park and did some other things. So I let him keep his paycheck, but I did not give an allowance that week. I think it is working really well because 1. he is saving his money for his goal and 2. even though his paychecks vary, he is learning how to work with a set amount each week. If it is gone by Monday, then he is short until Fri.

My DD18 gets the $30 allowance as long as she is not working and focusing on her studies. Next year will be different because she will be expected to get a summer job. She didn't have one this past summer because I asked her to help me with her younger sister which she did. If she shows that she can handle her studies and a job, then we will reconsider the situation.

It is tough being fair to both children when they are the same or close in age.

Anyway, just thought I would share what is working for us.
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