6 Realistic New Year’s Resolutions for College Students

6 Realistic New Year’s Resolutions for College Students

Let’s face it, most New Years resolutions don’t stick. Why? Because they’re hard.

Finding the motivation to keep a year-end goal is no easy task, and when you factor in class, homework, and exams it seems impossible to find the time for anything else. How’re you supposed to dedicate yourself to a year-long change AND get a passing grade in bio-chem?

What I’d like to propose is a different take on the standard New Year’s resolution. Instead of setting some kind of grand, life-altering ambition for the year, why not focus that energy into a few small, everyday changes? Pretty soon these small changes can become part of your lifestyle and second nature.

Here are six practical, realistic New Year’s resolutions that any college student can make. Most of them only take a few minutes to do, and over the course of a year can really add up.


Yes, we could all be a bit more financially frugal, that’s a no-brainer. If it was that easy though we’d all have a nice little cushion hanging out in our savings account.

Rather than stressing over creating a yearly savings plan or calling up your local Charles Schwab branch, find an empty jar and start putting your loose change in it (personally I use a pasta sauce jar). Every time you come home and change your clothes throw whatever coins that are in your pockets into that jar. Once the jar fills up count how much was in there and go treat yo self.


Another tried and true New Year’s resolution, the annual pledge to eat healthier. Eating right is tough enough on its own but balancing school, a social life, or a job can make it that much harder.

Trying to meal prep every week requires access to a kitchen, which isn’t a luxury all college students have. In lieu of being able to cook every single one of your meals, start small by focusing on snacking. It’s so easy to grab a bag of chips and soda while on the go, but this year try packing your own healthy snacks and a water bottle. I’m not saying you need to pack celery and kale, but some fruit, nuts, or granola are a lot better for you than Cheetos.


Have you ever scrolled through your newsfeed, saw a picture of a friend from back home, and smiled? What did you do in that moment? Sure, you may have given their latest post a thumbs up, but why not go a step beyond that?

You’re so focused on your day-to-day that it can be hard to catch up with old friends and family members. Next time that random thought about someone crosses your mind send them a quick text. It doesn’t need to be a lengthy letter, and could be as simple as, “You were on my mind, hope you’re doing well.”


Spinning out of the above tip, when was the last time you talked to mom or dad?

It’s true that every relationship is different, and for some students going to college is actually a chance to get away from family. If you are in a position though where you can reach out to your family every so often, then you should.

Consider setting 15 minutes aside each week to talk to your parents on the phone. Sure you could text or email or Facebook message, but trust us, a phone call would make them happiest.


If you’re like most college students your room is short on space and full of stuff. You don’t know how it happened, but seemingly overnight your closet is now brimming with clothes and there’s a chair in the corner with who-knows-what stacked on top of it.

Now is the best time to take a look through your room and see which things are taking up too much space or that you could simply live without. That random energy drink t-shirt you got as a promotional item? Donate it. That half-used notebook that’s been lying around since last spring? Recycle it. That empty yogurt container that’s now starting to change color on the inside? Toss it.


As a college student you’re technically already learning new skills, but this piece of advice is geared more towards learning a practical skill. A practical skill is predominately a skill you perform by hand, like woodworking or blacksmithing, but it’s not just limited to the kind of stuff you see on Game of Thrones.

There are tons of practical skills you can pick up as hobbies like cooking, baking, or gardening. If your living space makes it difficult there are still some fun options like crocheting or painting. One of the greatest senses of self-satisfaction comes from creating something with your hands, so search for creative ways to indulge in that kind of activity.

The old saying “new year, new you” seems like such a cliché, but in reality, it’s about as practical a perspective as you can have. The New Year is the perfect starting point to make a change and track your progress. So before you write off New Year’s resolutions as a set of cheesy promises, give some real thought to small tweaks you can make in your daily routine that could have a big affect on your quality of life.


How To Make A Great Elevator Pitch at the Career Fair

How To Make A Great Elevator Pitch at the Career Fair


Everyone needs a great elevator pitch at a career fair because that is really the key step to nabbing an interview with a company. You are selling yourself as a way to make their company better. The elevator pitch is a brief summary, short and to the point, about you and the company or product you represent. Aptly named because it should last no longer than a typical elevator ride, an elevator pitch needs to be convincing, concise, and memorable. Plus, once you have this elevator pitch down, you can use it anywhere an opportunity may arise.This is what you need your EP for the career fair to cover:

  1. Who you are: Introduce yourself, offer a firm hand shake and a resume.
  2. Objective: Tell the employer why you are there and what sort of employment you seek.
  3. Summary: Summarize your education and experience.
  4. Closing: Reiterate your interest and thank the employer.

And here are some tips for making it great.

Keep it short

The optimal EP is 60 seconds. That is why you want to get to the point as fast as possible. Brevity is of the utmost importance. You want it to be short and concise so you can give the person time to respond and ask follow ups.  That is why you want to get to the call to action as fast as possible.

Know it by heart

Though you want to sound genuine, it doesn’t hurt to practice it…A LOT. But you want to know it so well so that you don’t sound like a robot reciting it. And if you practice with family and friends ask for feedback!

Avoid annoying buzzwords

Cut all the annoying junk out. Just stick to the point.

Show them you care (and then they will care) 

You have to show them the passion or they really won’t give you the time of the day. According to Career Services at UCSB, some of these topics will help:

  • Who am I? What do I offer? What field or industry am I interested in?
  • What does the employer need and what problem can I solve?
  • What are the main contributions I can make? What benefits can employers derive from my skills, based on my proven accomplishments?

Inject a little humor

A little joke or funny anecdote can make a cold pitch all that much better. And a personal anecdote they can relate to is always super helpful in getting them to really care.

Follow up

If you do it right, then the elevator pitch is really just the beginning. You need to be prepared for follow-up questions and be sure to make a plan to reconnect. To get that next conversation going try asking: How can I get a spot on your interview schedule? Can we set a phone appointment to discuss the issue of…? Can I send you my resume?


The Art of Networking

The Art of Networking
You may have heard the saying “it’s not what you know, but who you know that counts.” And then you may have immediately thought, I’m a college student, I don’t know anyone! But don’t throw up your hands and give up so easily. You’re not just in school to build what you know, but also to build who you know. Now is the time to start building your contacts. Doing this while you’re still in college is the key to finding employment post-graduation. Here’s how to start:

Socialize with as many people as you can

Start with class then work your way through campus clubs and student organizations. Don’t limit yourself by sticking close to your circle of friends you made freshman year in the dorm or your sorority sisters. Jump into the deep end of the pool by mixing with new people. How can you do that? By reaching out to new groups of people. This could be organizations related to your major and/or areas you’d be interested in working in after graduation; like a business club, a marketing organization or a speaker event hosted by your campus’ career center.

Additionally, you could sign up for events that grow your skills while stretching your socializing capabilities; like a hackathon, engineering society, or toastmasters. Never underestimate who you could meet!

Initiate the conversation

Now that you’re at an event take full advantage of it. Don’t sit in the back and text all your friends that aren’t there, get up and start mingling. This can be as simple as walking up to another member, professor or the speaker herself, sticking out your hand and introducing yourself.

The first impression you make should be to establish rapport, not make a request. Don’t start with “Hi, I need an internship this summer.” Instead, start with something small, but sincere, such as “Hi I’m Michael. I really enjoyed the point you made about how consumer preference dictates market demand, did your research always prove this theory?” People love it when they feel they have been heard. Picking one or two things out of a presentation and reiterating back to them makes an instant connection. If you are genuinely trying to connect with someone, you’ll never go wrong.

Follow-up after making a connection

Why spend all that time locating and attending events if you do nothing with those connections once you have them? The key to growing your network is following up once you’ve met someone. This could be done through text, email or by sending a LinkedIn connection request. If you haven’t created a LinkedIn account, stop everything and do that now! Even if your profile is basic and you don’t have any experience, you can start to build connections immediately.

Once you’ve connected make the point of giving more to your network than taking from your network. This means contributing! This can be adding content to LinkedIn, connecting people you met to each other, and recommending or endorsing connections with proven skills. Remember to be an advocate for others, so when the time comes they will advocate for you.

Do some company investigation

Another bonus of attending events and making connections is that as a college student you begin to get to know yourself more, understand what you’re passionate about and what you’re not. All of these events and people expose you to more opportunity and you’ll begin to better know what you want to do post-graduation. Interning with the government, a non-profit or at a company like Chegg is naturally the next step in the process to gaining exposure to a possible career path.

A great tool to better learn about possible career paths is Chegg’s Career Center. Once you know approximately which career path(s) interest you, begin to research companies that you can see yourself interning at. Start researching by googling brands that you love, shop at and use. Research their corporate website, their reviews on Glassdoor and LinkedIn site. Keep an Excel sheet recording your research and take special note of when they offer internships and how to apply.

Grow your network

Begin to branch out even more by connecting via LinkedIn with a professional aunt, cousin or alumni who are outside of your college network. This will expand your first, second and third connections on LinkedIn, making it easier to connect with more people in the future. You’ll also come up more often in recruiters’ searches.

Another viable option is to attend a career fair on campus, live and in person. This may seem like a scary prospect, but all those events you’ve been attending will have laid a nice foundation for you to know how to socialize in a professional setting. Make sure you talk to the recruiters at booths of companies you’ve researched and are interested in interning at. Take note of companies you’ve never heard of or never thought of working at before and research them when you get home. Get recruiters’ business cards at the fair and connect with him/her after the fair.  A friendly note post-career fair is a great way of getting on someone’s radar. Don’t be discouraged if one fair doesn’t lead to an internship, keep getting out there, keep connecting and eventually you will be noticed!

Today’s post was written by Chegg’s University Recruiting and Intern Program Manager, Lora Kyle. Lora has an undergraduate degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences from San Francisco State University and a Master’s in International Relations from Middlesex University, London. She has over eight years of professional experience in Human Resources, including a tenure as Driscoll’s Global Campus Program Manager.


The Art of Resume Writing

The Art of Resume Writing

Your resume is the first step in transitioning from an unemployed college student to a fully employed intern. However useful it is, to most college students ,writing a resume is a daunting task. It can be an overwhelming idea that you need list all your academic achievements, extracurricular activities and any jobs you’ve had in a way that makes an employer want to hire you, all while keeping it to one page!  But don’t freak out just yet.

Writing a resume can be fun if you look at it from the right perspective. Begin by not thinking about it as a detailed list of everything you’ve done, but rather a snapshot of your successes; a way to entice recruiters to interview you. A resume is a tool to start a conversation with a potential employer. It’s a way to get yourself noticed and Chegg Recruiting is here to help! Here’s a few things to make your resume a complete success:

Get some (free) help

Staring at a blank word doc with a blinking cursor could spell your doom. Don’t start there. Instead, begin online by searching for resumes of positions you’d like to have one day. Use these resumes as a roadmap of how your resume should look. (But don’t copy them!)

Obviously your resume needs to be of your accomplishments and skills, not a seasoned professional. However, by viewing these resumes’ formatting and vocabulary, you’ll have a better understanding of where to start.

Look at a couple of resumes, check out the formatting and a pay attention to the action verbs used to describe their accomplishments. If you need more help try Googling key phrases like: effective resumes, college student resumes, marketing intern resumes, etc. If you prefer in-person than online, check out your campus’ career center. They often have resume writing workshops you could attend or you could schedule an appointment with you campus’ career center representative for a 1×1 meeting.

Formatting, grammar and length are critical

After reviewing a few resumes online, take a stab starting to construct a resume. Start with the basic of all resume formatting:

    • Name (first and last.)


    • Contact information (email address and phone number are enough.)


    • Objective (typically a brief summary of who you are and what you’re looking for.)


    • Education (list college name, major, the semester and year you anticipate to graduate. When applying for an internship, add your GPA.)


    • Experience (have you worked before? Even if it’s at your colleges’ cafeteria, this is the area where you can show your positive indicators; such as trustworthiness, willingness to take initiative, or accuracy. When listing experience write the name of the business, dates worked, your title, and give a brief description of what you did there. Items to mention could be handling $2,000 of cash sales daily, training new employees, managing a lab’s database, report writing, or organizing shipments.)


    • Extracurricular activities (add clubs, sports teams, or organizations you belong. Put the dates you belonged and what positions you held. This is the perfect section for noting leadership qualities. We suggest to refrain from adding any political or divisive associates.)


    • Technical skills, soft skills and languages (add in any software knowledge, communication or language skills you have. Note the item you know and the level of proficiency you are, such as intermediate Java skills.)


This format can vary, but generally all resumes have a section for each. One thing that can’t vary is correct grammar. Make sure your spelling and punctuation are correct. Ask a friend to proofread once you’ve finished for any fine-tuning needed.  Unless you’re a PhD candidate, your resume should also be no more than 2 pages long with 11 or 12 point font. The font should be easy to read (i.e. Times New Roman, Calibri, etc.) and that’s what you want; an easy to read doc that gets a recruiter excited to contact you.

If you’re finding yourself writing a 3, 4, 5 page resume, take a break and come back to omit or summarize a few items. Recruiters probably won’t read past the second page, so try to condense.

Tailor it

Now that you’ve got a beautiful resume, you may want to start sending it out to hundreds of potential employers like Chegg! While we applaud your enthusiasm, the resume you just wrote is your template. That’s right, you’re not quite done.

The resume you’ve crafted is just a jumping off point for when you want to apply for an internship. When searching for an internship, read each intern job description carefully. When you’ve decided you have the skills necessary to apply, you need to tailor your resume for that job description. By tailoring, we mean adding the key words from the job description into your resume. These are often “power” verbs; like assist, deliver, direct, manage, maintain, prepare, process, supervise, test, update, etc. For each requirement, make sure you call out how you’ve demonstrated this in the past. It can be in your academic work, campus employment or sports activity. This relationship from your resume to the job description is key to getting a call back.

Today’s post was written by Chegg’s University Recruiting and Intern Program Manager, Lora Kyle. Lora has an undergraduate degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences from San Francisco State University and a Master’s in International Relations from Middlesex University, London. She has over eight years of professional experience in Human Resources, including a tenure as Driscoll’s Global Campus Program Manager.


What to do Before You Start Your Internship

What to do Before You Start Your Internship


You got the internship! Congratulations!

….Now what? The nerves are building up, you’re not sure what the next step is. There’s definitely some stuff you should do before you start your 9-5 life, but what?

I have done a lot of Googling and asked a lot of people for their advice on how to prepare for an internship over the last two years. This list is a compilation of the most helpful advice I found.

1. Learn your commute

The easiest and possibly most helpful way to feel prepared on the first day of work is to practice your commute. Find out exactly where your office is, how long it takes to get there and where you can park before it’s 9:15 and you’re 30 minutes late to orientation. I recommend doing this at the time you would on your first day, but if you don’t want anyone to see you testing it out you can go at night or on the weekend when no one is at the office. Just don’t forget to account for traffic on your first day. If you can’t practice your commute, just make sure to Google map it before the morning of, so you can leave yourself plenty of time to get there.

Pro tip: During the first couple days of work, ask around and see if there’s anyone you can carpool with. Carpooling means you get to use the carpool lane, you get to drive less AND you get to build relationships with your coworkers. Nice one, intern!

2. Learn the dress code

There are very few things worse than showing up to an event underdressed. One of those things is showing up to work underdressed. Take the time to look over the employee handbook and find out just what you’re in for. Some companies restrict certain fabrics and cuts, while others have no dress codes at all. The important rule of thumb is that if you have ANY doubt whatsoever in what you’re supposed to be wearing, dress up. No one ever talked badly about the newbie for looking way too professional on their first day. They do talk about that newbie who looks like a total slob. Buying clothes for an internship is awkward and weird and you might not know how certain articles of clothing are supposed to look, but just keep the word “professional” on your mind and ask the people who work in the store for their opinions. You’ll be able to get at least a week’s worth of clothes.

Pro tip: Before you start, focus on the basics. Grab some button down shirts, a pair of black pants. Wait until after your first week to redo your entire wardrobe so you can see what everyone else is wearing.

3. Look over your job description

Chances are you got your job offer a couple of months ago. Go back and make sure you know what skills are expected of you and that you can confidently use them. It never hurts to do a little googling and brush up on those skills you haven’t used in a while. At least know where you can find how-to videos online. Most importantly for everyone: go over basic Excel stuff. Whether you’re already familiar or not, you’re going to have to use Excel and the other members of the Microsoft Office Suite at your job.

Pro tip: Be able to summarize your job in a sentence or two. When you’re meeting new people on your first day, the most common question after “What’s your name?” is “So what are you going to be doing here?” and giving them a blank stare and an “Ummmm” is not the best first impression you could be giving.

4. Look over your company’s mission

Your first day, you’ll be meeting a lot of important people, potentially those who helped form the company or others who are high up on the corporate totem pole. Remembering the info you memorized for your interview will come in handy if asked about the company and where you fit and why you chose it. Hopefully you’re familiar with what your company does and why, but it will mean a lot to your coworkers to know that you are passionate about the mission and excited to be a part of their team.

Pro tip: You should keep this in mind throughout your internship. Maybe you took your internship just because you wanted an internship, but everyone will notice if you are enthused about the company and what they’re doing. It will help you be a better team player and a better employee.

5. Do some soul searching

Once you’ve gone over your company’s mission and your job description, take some time to reflect on what you want to get out of your internship. This is, after all, a learning experience for you. Take the time to outline some professional goals for the course of your internship. What skills to you want to acquire? What do you want to improve on? It’s important to do this before your internship starts because once you’re thrown into the hustle and bustle of a 9-5 job, you’ll be too busy to think about it unless you intentionally carve out a chunk of time to do so. Once you have some ideas, write them down so you can occasionally check in and see if you’re on the right track.

Pro tip: Share your goals with your manager. Your manager is there to give you projects, yes, but they’re also there to help you make the most of your intern experience. When you share your goals with them, chances are they’ll want to help you achieve them. They can help you refine your goals so that they fit your job and can even integrate them into the projects that they give you.

6. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

If you’re agonizing over the dress code or can’t sleep at night because you can’t remember if you’re supposed to arrive at 8 or 9, send an email to the person who hired you! Chances are, part of their job description is to answer questions from new hires. You’ll get peace of mind, and they’ll be happy you’re preparing for your new job. Don’t be afraid to get the answers you need to be confident and happy on the first day.

Pro tip: On the other side of the spectrum, don’t send 10,000 emails to that poor person. Spend some time brainstorming and write out all of your questions in one email. Once you see them next to each other, you can decide which questions you can live without knowing the answer to and delete them. Better for both parties.

7. Pack your bag

You’re almost there! So it’s the night before, and you are getting ready. Don’t forget to bring these things:

  1.  Notebook & Pen – they’re going to throw a TON of information at you, and you’ll forget 90% of it within 10 minutes. Write it all down so you can look back and ask as few repetitive questions as possible (they’re inevitable).
  2. Identification Documents – you’re going to be filling out a lot of paperwork on your first day. For some of the forms, you’ll need your social security number, your bank account routing number, and your passport (or some other forms of identification which can be found here). show them you’re prepared by bringing all of the necessary information with you.
  3. Water Bottle –Stay hydrated! Those paper cups by the water cooler are so wasteful. Go green and get a cool reusable water bottle!
  4. Lunch – on your first day, it’s important to bring a lunch. You might not need it, but if you do need it and you don’t have it that you will be super bummed. On the first day, you’ll be able to figure out your office’s lunch culture. Maybe you’ll be packing a turkey sandwich every day, maybe you’ll never have to bring out your Scooby Doo lunchbox again.
  5. Mints/Gum – Nothing is worse than being trapped talking to someone with bad breath, and you don’t want to be that person on your first day.
  6. Lip Balm – 9 hours is a really long workday! Plenty of time for your lips to get chapped. Bring lip balm so your smile is as dazzling as it usually is, without chapped or cracked lips.

You can do it! You’re ready! You got this!

I hope these tricks help you feel more confident for your first day of your new internship. Remember why you got the position, and live every day like it’s a job interview.

Keep it real, keep it humble, keep it professional.

And good luck!



A Breakdown of the New SAT and How You Can Nail It

A Breakdown of the New SAT and How You Can Nail It

The SAT has gone through some renovation, and it’s pretty obvious that the new SAT is very different from the old SAT. There aren’t any penalties for wrong answers, there are four options for the multiple-choice answers instead of five, and there are fewer but longer sections. These sections are Math, Evidence-Based Reading and Writing, and the now-optional essay.

Within the Math Test, there is a 55-minute part where you can use a calculator and a 25-minute section without a calculator. Within the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing Test there is a 65-minute reading section and a 35-minute language and writing section. The optional essay (which you will probably want to take) is now 50 minutes. The new SAT is trying to move away from being a test on how well you can take the SAT and become one that tests you on what you know.

How the New SAT is Graded

The new SAT is on a 1600-point scale rather than a 2400-point scale. There are 800 points for Math and 800 points for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing. The optional essay is scored separately. Every time a test occurs, it is graded independently of other tests. This means that you are only compared to the people that took the test on the same day as you.

Test Tips

  1. Take Practice Tests

The best thing you can do for yourself is take a full-on practice test emulating the settings and the breaks of the real test before you start your studying. That way, you can easily identify your weaknesses right off the bat. After you practice, it’s a good idea to take another full practice test before the actual test, so you can see what kind of score you can expect.

  1. Figure out what makes you uncomfortable

Beyond the types of questions that were hard, take a look at the whole experience. Were you crunched for time? Were you burnt out by the end of the test? Were you completely flummoxed? If you felt uncomfortable with the whole ordeal, take another practice test and compare your answers. Find specific areas to focus on so you don’t overwhelm yourself.

  1. Practice!

The most obvious but the hardest thing to do when studying for a big test is to practice the problems that you aren’t good at. To make it easier, make a schedule for yourself. Spread your studying out over the week so you aren’t spending too much time on it every day, but you are completing all the you need to do in order to feel confident for your test. Each sitting, focus on one section or one type of problem. That way, you’ll make the most of your study time.

  1. Make sure you are getting the right information

With the new SAT, you are going to get a lot of wrong information from your parents, your older friends, and your siblings. Make sure to double check what you hear with the reliable sources like The College Board, Chegg, or Kaplan.

  1. Stay Healthy

At least 2 weeks before the test, get in the habit of eating good food, getting a full night’s sleep, and drinking lots of water. Most importantly: breathe. The SAT is scary but it isn’t the end of the world. Try your best, and if it goes worse than you expect you can always take it again!

You spend lots of time practicing and preparing for the exam, so get excited! This is your chance to show The College Board just how smart you are and how much you deserve a good score. You are so ready! Go get ‘em!