POINT: Loans go toward frugality, not excess

What's all this about college being the best years of your life?

Contrary to what I've seen in movies and been told since I was young, being in college kind of sucks.

Over the summer, I worked long hours and had little time to myself. But when I had time to myself, I had a little bit of money to spend. Now that the semester has started again, I'm just as busy, except now I'm broke.

An example: my phone broke, the internet in my apartment went out and I got a flat tire, all within a few days.

If I were a working professional, or even if I were just employed and not a college student, all that wouldn't be a huge problem. I could shell out a little money to have it all cleaned up. I could have my car towed out of my parking lot and my phone shipped quicker (the thing with the internet is completely out of my hands). Instead, I've been working as a journalist without a phone for a little over a week and trying to find spare time to change my tire myself.

It's not that I don't have the money. I do. I've saved up a lot of money over the summer, because I only spent a little of what I made. But if I spend it now, I won't have it to pay tuition, and then I can't pay my bill because federal loans don't cover the full cost of attendance. Then the university hits me with late fees.

Go to college for a better future? I was much happier working. At least my life didn't stop when I got a flat tire.

Are there really people who go out and blow their refund checks on frivolous things? I don't believe it. If there are, I don't know how they can do it and not starve.

Of course I have to go out and spend a little money some days. I'll be frustrated to the point of quitting everything if I don't. And I admit, some weeks I'll eat fast food most of the days, because I've been going all day and the last thing I want is to cook and then have to do the dishes afterward.

For the most part though, I have to try to keep track of every dollar I spend, because every dollar spent on something I don't need is less money I can put toward tuition. And the last thing I want is a mountain of debt after I graduate with an English degree.


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