Archives—May 2012

Money Management Tips!

Money Management Tips for Students

Hiking to Quincy Falls. Searching for waterfalls can be a fun and inexpensive way to spend an afternoon.

When you’re in college, managing money can be a very challenging thing to do. Students attending college may not be used to buying things for themselves, having a job, or managing a bank account. It can be challenging to save money and prioritize purchases. For this reason, I would like to offer five tips for students.

1. Open a bank account

I strongly encourage students to open a bank account at one of the banks in the Houghton area. Having an account is a great way to keep track of your money without it burning a hole in your pocket. You don’t have to worry about losing money or having it stolen. Also, if you have your money in a bank account, you are more likely to know how much you have available to you and you can save your money for special purchases. There are several banks in the local area; check out the Keweenaw Local Resource Guide for a complete listing.

2. Be cautious with credit cards

An important part of becoming an adult is effectively managing your credit. College students must be very cautious applying for credit cards and making charges on credit. You should limit yourselves to one credit card and should limit the purchases you make on credit. It is a good idea to not buy something on credit that you couldn’t buy with cash the same day. It is also important that you keep track of your credit card bills and are never late on payments. Late fees and increased interest rates can take even more money out of a college student’s small income. Some students find it helpful to have their credit card payments automatically pull out of their bank account; if you choose to do this, you should make sure you always have enough money in your account to cover your bills and make sure you are still reviewing your credit card statement carefully for any errors or incorrect charges.

3. Get involved in campus activities

A great way to have fun for free or low cost is to get involved in campus activities. As a student, part of being in college is taking advantage of all the great performances and events that take place on campus. At Michigan Tech there is always something going on. Whether it’s a performance in the Rozsa Center, a comedian in the Memorial Union Building, an athletic event, or a student organization meeting, there is something for everyone to get involved in. If you’re a college student looking for something fun to do, check out the Student Organization List, the University Calendar of Events, the Student Activities Comedy Series schedule, the Rozsa Center Shows, and the Athletic Calendar.

4. Go on an adventure

The options are really endless when it comes to local adventure. You could go to the beach; drive along the Keweenaw; go kayaking, hiking, birdwatching, or mountain climbing; or take part in a local community event. There are several activities that students can do for free within walking distance of campus. For a listing of local community events, go to the Keweenaw Peninsula Chamber of Commerce website. The Michigan Tech’s Outdoor Adventure Program also helps students out who would like to go on an adventure by providing opportunities to participate in various trips and rent equipment at a very low cost. It’s amazing the money you can save by making a conscious effort to stay active and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.

5. Get a Job

Some of the 2011 Orientation Team Leaders!

Getting a job in college can be a great way to earn money, save money, and get valuable work experience. Having a job can help you be independent and learn important life skills. There are several opportunities for employment at Michigan Tech and in the local community. Michigan Tech’s Career Services is a great resource for students searching for employment. Career Services has a listing of local jobs that are available for Michigan Tech students. Career Services also hosts several interview skills workshops and resumé review sessions throughout the year to help students be successful in finding employment. In addition, each semester there is a Student Employment Expo held in the Memorial Union Building where students can learn more about on-campus jobs and the departments that hire students. Follow this link for a partial listing of the University departments that hire students.

These are just a few helpful tips of things students can do to effectively manage their money. College can be expensive but in many ways it doesn’t have to be. There’s plenty of ways to have fun while saving money!

Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have!

-Samantha Allen, seallen@mtu.edu


Summer Youth Programs

Explorations

Photo Credit: http://youthprograms.mtu.edu/about-syp.php

Michigan Tech’s Youth Programs offer more than 50 weeklong summer learning programs—Mind Trekkers Camps for students in grades 6–8 and Career and Adventure Explorations for students in grades 9–11.

Students can choose to participate in one weeklong program or stay for several weeks and explore a variety of topics. In each session, participants spend approximately thirty-two hours exploring their areas of interest through hands-on labs, classroom activities, and field experiences. There are plenty to choose from! Explorations include aquatic ecology, digital photography, engineering (general, chemical, electric, materials, and more), forensic science and CSI, video game programming, and many more.

Programs are instructed by Michigan Tech faculty, graduate students, and local specialists. Youth Programs are truly more than ordinary summer camps—they provide middle school and high school students with the opportunity to experience what it’s like to take classes on a real campus and learn from university faculty and other experts. At Youth Programs, participants gain insight into areas they may wish to study in the future… it’s also a great place to make friends with similar interests from around the world. In past years, there were participants from across the United States, plus Puerto Rico, Austria, South Korea, Canada, and Columbia.

For more information, to view a listing of the explorations offered, or to register, visit 2012 Summer Camps & Career and Adventure Explorations.

 

Housing

Youth Programs participants who don’t commute locally are housed in Wadsworth Hall, Michigan Tech’s largest residence hall. During the academic year it houses approximately 1,000 students. In the summer, Wadsworth Hall is home to Youth Programs participants and staff; it’s also the site of many of after-class activities.

Student Staff

Youth Programs Staff 2011

In addition to the Youth Programs instructors and professional staff, student staff members also assist throughout the summer to make the programs a success, serving as activities counselors and residence counselors. Activities counselors lead fun recreational activities and games. Residence counselors supervise the participants during breakfast, lunch, and the evening hours. The residence counselors live in Wadsworth Hall with the young students; there are approximately ten students per residence counselor. The residence counselors hold nightly meetings to update the participants on upcoming recreational activities and other important information.

Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have.


Feeling like Summer!

Houghton Lift Bridge

With temperatures reaching the upper 60s–low 70s this past weekend, students in the Houghton area were heading to the nature parks, hiking trails, and waterfalls.  Although 60 degrees may not seem very warm to some, for Michigan Tech students this modest increase in temperature symbolizes the start of summer. Students made their way to the local beaches this weekend and a few of the brave even went swimming in Lake Superior, which is rarely ever above 50 degrees! Many students are hoping that the weather will continue to warm up and be sunny for the upcoming Memorial Day weekend. Most students do not have Friday classes in the summer and all students are dismissed from class for Memorial Day Recess on Monday. Memorial weekend provides students with the opportunity to take some time off from the fast pace of summer courses and enjoy the local area. Whether it’s camping, biking, hiking, or a car trip along the Keweenaw shoreline, there is plenty to enjoy.

Memorial Day Events

The Memorial Day remembrance ceremonies begin this weekend with the seventh annual Parade of Thanks, taking place on Saturday, May 19, at 10 a.m. in downtown Houghton. The parade honors armed forces personnel and veterans. To continue the remembrance of those who served our country, the Fort Wilkins Historical State Park Memorial Day Ceremony will be held on Monday, May 28, at Fort Wilkins State Park in Copper Harbor. Last year, this program included the Keweenaw Detachment #1016 United States Marine Corps League, a student program by the Copper Harbor School, a musical tribute, and a Memorial Day address.

Ride the Keweenaw Weekend

Photo Courtesy of: https://www.facebook.com/events/377878668908818/?ref=nf

Also taking place this month—Friday, May 25 through Sunday, May 27—is the third annual Ride the Keweenaw Weekend hosted by the Copper Harbor Trails Club. Ride the Keweenaw originated two years ago as a celebration of the Copper Harbor Mountain Bike Trails being designated by the International Mountain Bicycling Association as an “Epic Ride.” The rating of “Epic Ride” is one of the best designations a trail can receive. They received this designation because of the diversity of the trails, the thrill of the ride, the beauty of the surrounding area, and the collaboration of the people who make the trail system a success.

The weekend’s events include food, music, demonstrations, and of course biking on the “Epic Trails.” On Saturday, May 26, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., there will be guided tours for the Michigan Tech Trails, the Churning Rapid Trails, and the Swedetown Trails. There will be live music on Saturday evening in Copper Harbor Park. On Sunday, May 27, there will be demonstrations and more biking! All proceeds from the weekend’s events will go toward funding the Keweenaw Point Trail Project. The plans for the Keweenaw Point Trail Project is to create another trail along the shoreline at the tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula. The project is estimated to cost $10,000 for each mile of the trail, which is expected to be eight to ten miles long. The Copper Harbor Trails Club is hosting the Ride the Keweenaw Weekend as one way of raising funds for the project. When the funding comes through, the trail will improve the local area not only recreationally but economically as well. The addition of a waterfront mountain bike trail to a trail system already designated as an “Epic Ride” would increase the number of visitors to the surrounding area significantly.

I hope students and parents alike enjoy the beginning of summer! Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have.


Staying Active in the Keweenaw

Keweenaw Bike to Work Day

May is National Bike Month and May 12-25 is Bike to Work Week. To help promote the healthy and environmentally friendly transportation of biking, the Houghton area will host the third annual Keweenaw Bike to Work Day on Friday, May 18. There will be several events taking place throughout the day for people who choose non-motorized transportation. Those who register in advance will be entered into a raffle and will have the opportunity to win great prizes donated by local merchants. In the past, bike riders in Calumet, Laurium, Hancock, Houghton, and other points throughout the peninsula received snacks, prize giveaways, and bike safety checks. There is a good chance these will be occuring again… now lets hope the summer weather gets here in time for this great event!

Copper Country Cycling Club

If your student is interested in cycling, he or she may enjoy participating in some of the events put on by the Copper Country Cycling Club. The C4, as it’s often referred to, is one of Michigan Tech’s student organizations. The group works to promote bicycling and an active lifestyle by assisting with cycling events in the local community, working to maintain the University’s trail system, and organizing races. 4C also has a collegiate mountain bike team that competes in NCCA Division II midwestern races. Students interested in joining this student organization can participate in the midwestern races or assist with the other activities and events the organization holds.

Michigan Tech Trails

If your student enjoys mountain biking, there is no need to look far! The Michigan Tech Trails, located by the Student Development Complex, provide students year-round outdoor recreational fun with 35 km of trails for cross country skiing, mountain biking, and running. There are trails of varying difficulty, so all levels of hikers and bikers will have fun. Check out the Mountain Biking Trails for detailed trail routes. There are miles of trails throughout the Keweenaw Peninsula, several of which are rated as the “best in the midwest.” For more information on Keweenaw trails, check out the Keweenaw Trails and Maps.

Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have.

-Samantha Allen, seallen@mtu.edu