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Being a college student while stressful (at times) also means that you have access to lots of great resources without ever having to leave your college’s campus. Here is a list of some of the resources that most college students have access to but don’t seem to appreciate often enough.

1. The Writing Center

Not only does every campus have a writing center but also they tend to be emphasized during orientation. Yet despite this nobody seems to actually go to the writing center. There seems to be a misconception that in order to go you need to have a paper that is already complete but that is often far from the case. One time I went to the writing center and all I had was notes from class because I was having difficulty picking a topic and even in that situation they were extremely helpful. Of course you can also go if you do have a completed paper and just need help with some final revisions.

2. The Career Center

Similar to the writing center, everybody seems to know that the career center exists yet nobody seems to take advantage of most of the resources provided by them. Every career center but they all provide the basics like resume help. The career center at my school has everything from business card printing to the ability to take a LinkedIn profile photo for you. Many career centers also have a program where they will lend you a suit for interviews at little to no cost. Check out your career center’s websites to get an idea of what they offer.

3. Textbook Funding

While not every college has textbook assistance, most do (so you should double check that this is fact a resource on your campus). Textbook funding is exactly what it sounds like. If due to various financial circumstances you are unable to purchase your textbooks a particular semester you can apply for the funding to help pay for your textbooks.

4. Major Specific Funding

A lot of times certain departments will have funds that only students with particular majors can apply for. These funds can help with everything from travel expenses to conferences to internships. Asking around and getting on any relevant email lists are the two best ways to learn about any available funding.

5. Tutoring

Not only are tutors extremely knowledgeable (they have to be to become tutors) but also they are extremely under-appreciated. You can go to a tutor and say “I have no idea what “insert topic” is, can you explain it in a simplified way?” and they won’t judge you. Tutors often also have strategies for tackling the topics that students seem to struggle with most since they often times have taken the exact class in the past. Furthermore, schools often have tutors in areas you might not expect. For example my college has a tutor that specializes in chemistry writing (which is super helpful the first time you have to write a college lab report).

6. Free Software

Colleges typically pay for various software subscriptions that students can use for free. These can range from Microsoft Office to extremely specific software for designing files that a 3D-printer can read. Usually colleges will have a portal/website that you can log into with your student id, once you are logged in you will be able to view all available programs.

Every college also has resources that are unique to them. I tried to list resources that tend to be available regardless of where you go to college. That being said I strongly encourage asking around on your college’s campus to try and learn about resources that may be more school-specific (upperclassmen tend to be an amazing wealth of knowledge). With all of this being said hopefully you will be able to better take advantage of the resources available to you.

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the author

Samantha Linder is a sophomore at Smith College where she is double majoring in neuroscience and art history. Samantha's favorite words include hippocampus, logorrhea, and Benedict Cumberbatch.

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