Originally Posted by clixpix
When I was in college, I did everything I could...factory work, kitchen work, child care, theater concessions, office work...basically anything I could get...I had no standards!
When money is tight, you have to decide what is a "want" and what is a "need". Is cable a "need"...probably not. Internet? If that's a need, is it the cheapest option (dial-up)? Do you have a cell phone and
a land line? Vacations and trips are most likely a "want", but they're not "needs" except in rare occasions (funerals, family weddings). My point is that there are always ways to cut costs when times are tough.
I can relate to not having any standards when it comes to jobs! Back in the 1980's I was working at low paying jobs and I was just bearly getting by. I really needed more money so I found lots of part time jobs to help me. So long as it was moral and legal I was not above doing it. I cleaned houses, babysat for a professional nanny service, I telephoned solicited for appointments for vacuum demonstrations and insulation installations and even bartended. I contacted offices and did piece work typing at home, and I even took to selling costume jewellery through home parties. I pretty much worked 7 days a week doing all kinds of odd jobs to get by.
I went back to school in 1994 at the ripe age of 32 years old. I had credit card debt and really couldn't afford it, but I went anyway. I took out student loans but only in the amount that I needed them. I know many take out the maximum they can get and buy cars and computers etc, but I realized early on that it wasn't free money and that once I finished school I would have to pay it back, and I didn't want to be saddled with more debt than I absolutely had to be.
I was fortunate that as a student nurse I became eligible to work in nursing homes after 5 months in the nursing program. However, before that worked as a cashier in a pharmacy about 20 hours per week, which was a lot of hours in addition to the intensive nursing school and clinical schedule. But I needed the income and it wasn't an option.
Once I became eliglible to work in a nursing home things got a bit better for me. They pay more than a cashier position. I worked about 24 hours a week (3 shifts), which helped a great deal.
However, by midway through my second year my loans had been used up and I had to work full time in addition to full time school which included full days or nights on the wards doing patient care for my clinical experience.
For the last six months that I was in nursing school, 3 of those months being unpaid full time 12 1/2 hour shifts on the wards doing my practicum experience before graduating, I was also working full time 8 hour shifts at the nursing home.
My practicum was 12 hour shifts of days and nights. When I worked days, I would work nights at the nursing home. That meant that I finished my school shift at 7pm and went home and slept for 3 1/2 hours and got up and went to work at the nursing home. Worked all night long taking no breaks and leaving there at 6am so I could go right back to the hospital for another 12 hour practicum shift. Go home and sleep for a few hours and then back to the nursing home for 11:30pm. When I worked nights doing my practium I finished work at 7am. From there I went straight to the nursing home and did an 8 hour day shift finishing up at 3pm. I would go home and sleep for a few hours and go to the hospital for my practicum at 7pm.
I was a walking zombie. I was doing 94 hour work weeks and only getting paid for 40 of them.
You basically do what you have to do to survive. I didn't have family that I could turn to to get help with money. There were times I seriously thought of dropping out of school. The only thing that kept me from doing that is the knowledge that I owed thousands of dollars in student loans whether I got the education or not, so I pushed and somehow managed to do it and even graduated with honours with a 4.0 average in all of my courses.
In preparation of going back to school I made life a little easier for me. I bought a small deep freezer and spent thousands of dollars buying canned, boxed, meats and frozen foods. By the time I went to school my freezer was stocked to the top. I'm glad I did that because there were some lean times with money and it was only because I had the foresight to stockpile food did I manage to keep myself fed. I also moved to a cheaper apartment 1 block from school so I didn't have to worry about transportation. And I asked around about used books. I managed to find someone who graduated 6 years before I did who gave me her books and between her and my sister-in-law and a few of the teachers who were unloading their books, I managed to get all of the books I needed even if they were several editions older than what they said I needed. The only books I actually bought were my Sociology, Intro to Psych and my Anatomy and Physiology books. All of my nursing ones were older free ones. So I saved lots of money there. And my stethescope was an old one that my sister-in-law got for me from one of her co-workers.
If you want something badly enough you do what you can to make it happen.