Monthly Archives: October 2012

How To Prepare For Retirement

In my previous post I discussed a few ways that one may be able to apply to their own lifestyle. Hopefully, those ideas and tips will lead a person to a result of keeping some of a well earned paycheck in their pocket. Retirement is something that most of us do not give much thought to. Instead of being reliant on social security when we’re older and/or unable to work, having substantial funds of our own would be a much better option. Especially when none of us know whether the system will be there for future generations! On the Osun Defender’s website, they share some do’s and don’ts when it comes to setting aside money for retirement. On About.com, Melissa Phipps, a guide for the website shares six different types of retirement plans that one should know about. Most know about 401(k) plans, but there are others such as IRA accounts. If a person were to build up enough that they are considering investment, a few things such as stocks, bonds, or mutual funds could be a good option. What about people in their 20’s or a little bit older? Have they have fallen behind in saving for retirement already? According to Walter Updegrave, who writes for CNN’s website, there’s no need to worry. If one is still unsure about where to start, check out these ten tips on the United States Department of Labor’s website.

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A Start to Saving? Make Cuts of Your Own

Saving money by cutting back on a few expenses can be a good start on setting aside funds for future needs. Catie Marie Martin, a college student at Mississippi Statue University brings up nine good tips to save money in college. Tips such as carpooling or brewing your own coffee instead of running through Starbucks can add up in the long run. What about those of us who don’t have the option to walk, ride our bikes, or carpool to where ever we need to go? Nedra Rhone, who writes for the Atlanta Bargain Hunter blog, shares some tips that may help our vehicles be a little more fuel efficient. Not that these tips will take your car from getting twenty miles per gallon to thirty. But these days any little bit can help. What about costs of energy? Electric and gas bills tend to go up when winter comes around. The staff on infoZine.com bring ten tips that may be of help when that time of year comes around. From time to time, we all have to give our wardrobe an update, whether it’s due to the clothing wearing out or not wanting to look like we’re borrowing clothes from our parents. Josh Venecia on The Towerlight‘s webiste brings some ideas on places to check out and sales to go for when shopping for some new additions to our closets. Another idea that most of us may not think about is our cell phone bill. Do we really need unlimited talk and text? Maybe we just need unlimited on one thing or the other. If a person has such a plan, usually they are able to view how many minutes, texts and data they have actually used for the month. Re-evaluating our needs when it comes the the phones in our pockets could make a difference.  I personally know a few people that have changed their plans due to texting more than talking and they are now paying less than what they started out with. Unhookedcellular.com has a page where they have brought links to different cellular companies together so one can view different plans and phones that may fit their needs better.

Change Of Topic; Saving Money

For my last topic I looked into how internships can be very beneficial, how a person can get the most out of that experience and a few good ways to go about finding one. Now I will be looking into a topic about saving money. These days it seems as if a lot of people in our communities struggle to make ends meet due to money being tied up in expenses such as food, gas, rent, child care and other various bills. I actually work for a local bank and am going to combine my knowledge from there with what I find in my research. The bank I work for has a bunch of programs that one can get themselves set up with, one being “529 College Savings” plan. If someone has a child that they would like to set aside money for, for his/her college education that would be a good way to go about it. Some my have their objections involving expenses such as the ones that I mentioned earlier. But setting aside a few dollars a day, week, or even a month can get things going. Another thing that some do not give much thought to is retirement. No one is getting any younger and I think all of us would like to enjoy at least of few of our final years without having to work. I will be looking into not only things that we can cut back on, but also the best sources and plans that can get us the most for our money when we do save.

Curating

What makes good curating for the web? When we visit websites normally, audiences like to see something inviting and interesting. Good presentation and organization for business and ideas are a neccessity, in most cases. One website that most of us can make an excpetion for is Craigslist.com. I live in the South Bend area, so that is what I will be referring to. The setup is organized but not nessecarily attractive. Maybe if there were pictures of a few items it could be more eye-catching. But simultaneously, millions of people make postings on craigslist and the website’s intentions are to basically be an online classifieds section. So while craigslist may not look very interesting, those who are familiar with the website and its purposes know that it’s not there to dazzel its viewers. Maybe if craigslist invested in hiring people to be “Content Curators” things that are posted could be managed, if a time frame were given to those that made postings. For example, someone trying to sell a car could make a posting, but craigslist could have it set up so that there is a time frame, such as 3-6 months for the post to be in existence. If the item has not been sold, one can simply create the posting again! On FilmSchoolRejects.com, they discuss curating for a different industry. In the interview, around 3:20 there are some very good similarities between curating for the web and film that are discussed! Take the time to listen to the interview for the first five minutes at least! 🙂

Internships Give a Head Start

Jessica Lim from The Sophian, discusses why internships are a must for today’s students.

“Even so, many employers regard internships highly because they help hiring teams evaluate how an individual would fare in the actual workplace, as well as separate those who have experience from those who do not. Competition is steep in the global job market, so obtaining “real world” experience through an internship can allow a student to become a more qualified candidate. Moreover, internships can be beneficial in more than the academic sense—students can also build connections within a career field. Through interning, individuals can establish a professional network that is helpful in today’s job hunt. In addition, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers’ 2008 Experiential Education Survey, employers reported hiring 70 percent of their interns.

Although internships are not the only key to securing a career position, in today’s competitive job market, some argue that it is what you know and who you know that often makes the difference, and that internships often address both issues at the same time. As such, the importance of internships may demand considerable attention from the college student.”

I think Jessica has it right because when companies are looking for new employees, they’re going to go for the ones that already have the experience. Internships can also get you a good start on networking with companies and having connections when it comes time to send out your resume. A couple friends of mine would actually fall into that seventy percent of being hired into company that they interned for.

Just as Jessica says, an internship doesn’t mean that anything is going to be guaranteed to you after graduation. But it can give your resume a good boost compared to those that have no experience, and who knows? The company may have a position waiting for you after graduation. Why not take the time to give yourself a better chance at getting hired?