AnneOnCollege.net

Learning something new every day!

About Me...

In June 2007 I decided to look into returning to school for my Bachelor's degree. I had been managing okay with my Associate's degree, but the idea of moving back home [South Florida] without more education under my belt was not so appealing. By the end of July I had started my first class. Two years later I am five classes away from completing that degree and my oldest child is about to start her college journey. View my complete profile

About This Blog...

With this blog I hope to share some of what I have learned through my experiences as an online student and now, mom of a college student. Here you will find great scholarships, student deals, and other information to help with your voyage into higher education. Happy Studying!

Online learning that is priceless and does not cost a cent

When we think of going back to school or learning new things we immediately think $$$. Well there are some great free learning sites out there. This may not mean as much as a traditional degree, but it is a great way to get your feet wet if you have been out of school for a while. Check out the following, you will not be disappointed:
  • HP Learning Center - free classes in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, website design, Linux, and many many more
  • SBA - the Small Business Association offers free courses in accounting, starting a business, marketing, etc.
Today is a good day to learn something new. Pick one thing and follow it through. And hey, it is free! Happy learning!

The Importance of Credit

As we start out in life we do not pay much attention to credit and its overarching effect on our lives. But credit affects our lives, present and future, in many ways. Good credit begins with paying bills on time, every time. Having good credit means lower interest rates on credit cards and loans. And lower interest rates translate into smaller payments. This is important when buying a car or house.

Did you know some employers check your credit as part of the hiring process? Imagine not getting your dream job because you made some poor choices with your finances.

There are ways you can build and protect your credit. First, take advantage of your free credit report. Everyone gets one free credit report from each of the three major reporting bureaus each year. Just go to annualcreditreport.com. You may get all three reports at one time or spread them out throughout the year. Second, pay all bills on time every time. Never skip a payment or pay a bill late. Third, use credit wisely. Do not carry more than two credit cards. Credit cards should be used sparingly. Do not charge more than you can pay off within one to two months. Fourth, visit the following sites to learn more about protecting yourself from identity theft and wise ways to use credit:


More Scholarship Opportunities

Here are some interesting and simple-to-apply-for scholarships located on Scholarships.com:
  • SpendonLife - Write a blog entry on your own blog about credit or identity theft. We are wanting to use your creativity and researching skills to decide on a more specific topic. We do ask that all entries are less than 400 words. To qualify you must: 1. have a legitimate blog (blogs consisting of nothing but spam do not qualify), 2. be at least 18 years or older, 3. be a full or part-time student of an accredited college or university. DEADLINE: December 1st
  • Talbots Women's Scholarship Fund - Five women will each be awarded $10,000 scholarships and 50 women will each be awarded $1,000 scholarships. All applicants must be seeking an undergraduate degree from an accredited two- or four-year college or university, or vocational-technical school. Only applicants seeking a bachelor's degree from a four-year college or university are eligible to receive a $10,000 award. Scholarship awards are based primarily on financial need and previous achievements for women who earned their high school diploma or GED at least 10 years ago. DEADLINE: January 2nd
  • 2nd Annual Create-A-Greeting-Card $10,000 Scholarship Contest - The 2nd Annual Create-A-Greeting-Card $10,000 Scholarship Contest is open to high school, college, and graduate students. Applicants are asked to design the front of a greeting card that could be sold as an actual card in our line. Designs may consist of original photographs, artwork, and/or computer graphics. DEADLINE: January 15th

Remember to pay attention to deadlines, use spell check AND have someone proofread for you, read all directions, and have fun!

Useful links to help with your studies

In my 15 months as an online student I have found it important to have certain things: paper, pencils, calculators (I am an accounting major), and links to some of the my most used references. I am including a few of those such references here today.
  • Son of Citation Machine is a useful tool to help with your proper citing of references in research papers. Just choose the style (APA, MLA, etc.) and complete the form with the appropriate information.
  • The Owl at Purdue is another research paper resource. This link will take you directly to the proper way to format your APA research paper. If you need additional writing help just click on one of the links on the side of the page.
  • Merriam-Webster Online is your one-stop online dictionary, thesaurus, Spanish-English translator, and medical reference tool.
  • free-ed.net has free online studies. Click on the list of courses at the top of the page and search for your area of interest.
  • OpenOffice.org has your free download for OpenOffice. This program works much like other word processing, spreadsheet, database, and slideshow programs. It is an open source program which means it is being updated by many around the globe. If you have experience in this you too can assist in its further growth.
Happy Learning!

Unique Online College

I notice when searching for online colleges the same ones come up time and time again: Kaplan, University of Phoenix, Everett. I am not saying these are not good schools. I do not know as I have not attended any of them. I change my search to colleges offering online classes and I still get these, but I also get some new yet familiar names as well: Liberty, University of Virginia, University of Maryland. Not once in any of these searches do I come across the college I do attend. That is the one I want to talk about today.

When one thinks of college they think of a two to four course load per semester. This can be a bit daunting for the full time employee, especially if you also have a full time family. I think my family mentioned this college to me as I can not seem to find it in any average search online. See, I am a full time student. I did have a full time job and still have a full time family. Oh, did I mention I am a 4.0 gpa full time student? The college I attend offers a unique way of attending school. One that lets you concentrate fully on the course at hand and not be divided by many classes at one time. I take one class every four weeks. This allows me the time to give my full attention to the particular subject I am taking each month.

Check out Keiser University (click here). Keiser is based out of Florida and is a real brick and mortar school. They have students from all over the United States and the world and are accredited. Their philosophy is simple and it works.

Do your homework and see which school, online or traditional, is right for you. College can be daunting, especially if you are older, already in the workforce, and/or have other obligations. Who knows, this may be the type of school you have been looking for to continue with your education. And do not forget to check out the various scholarship sites and complete your free application for federal student aid (FAFSA).

Good luck!

Great Deals For Students

Did you know well-known companies offer deals targeted specifically for students. You can do a search for student discounts or check out some of the offers listed below:

  • Apple will discount $100 off a computer, desktop or laptop. When you enter their store (click here) look to the middle left-hand side for the education store link. You will then be prompted to locate your school. Then ¡voila! you will be redirected to your education store. Additionally, during the past two summers Apple has included $200 towards an iPod™. Be sure to check out their refurbished and clearance deals while you are there.
  • Dell also offers student deals through their Dell University (click here) or you can go to dell.com and type in Student Discount in the search box at the top of the page. My college's discount is 7% all products offered through Dell.
  • For student discounts on software try studentdiscounts.com. I have not purchased anything from them as of this writing but have not found anything negative about them either. Check them out.
  • Next check out the Student Advantage Discount Card. They offer discounts at local, national, and online shops. Just like the popular discount cards offered at bookstores their card is $20 annually. If you make a qualified purchase within the first 30 days they will give you $10 cash back. They also offer a 30-day money back guarantee. Just click here to find out more.

Today more than ever we need to be mindful of every penny. There are more offers out there just waiting to be found. Remember to do your research before giving out any personal information. Check to see if a site accepts PayPal or Google Checkout. Both are secure methods for paying online.

Until next time...

Scholarship Deadlines Fast Approaching

Scholarships are a great way to help pay for college. Most scholarships have an income qualifier. But for those caught in the middle between not quite a low enough income to qualify and not high enough to pay effortlessly there are plenty of scholarship opportunities available. With a little research and some effort there is plenty to go around for everyone. Here are some scholarships ending within the next 30 days:


  • College Prowler Essay Competition - You must submit a college application essay that is your original work and not previously published through print or electronic medium. The essay can be on any topic and could be an essay you wrote for a class, another scholarship, the school paper, an admissions essay, etc. Just make sure the essay is 1,000 words or less. Also, you must be a legal resident of the United States to be eligible for this award. DEADLINE: November 30th
  • Independent Women's Forum Essay Contest - To be eligible for this award, you must read the articles listed on the sponsor's Web site and submit a typed, double-spaced essay of no longer than 750 words on the topic listed in the application on the web site. DEADLINE: December 1st
  • Brickfish "College Must-Haves" Promotion - To be eligible for this promotion, you must create video, submit a photo with a detailed description or write a blog with photos telling us all about your college must-haves and why it's essential to making your student life bearable. DEADLINE: December 10th


To see more scholarship opportunities like the ones above, please click here to visit FastWeb.com or click the graphic below.


Find Free Money For College!

The Importance of Knowing...

Today I learned an all-important lesson - knowledge before testing.

See, this awesomely great bookkeeping from home opportunity was within my grasp... until I had to take a test. I know how to follow directions and figure out just about any computer program out there - if I truly have an interest in it. Tests, not so much. I understand their importance. I truly do. But when I say I do not use a program often as I have been using industry-specific software this should be an indicator to how well I will do on a test for this not often used program. Needless to say, I am fairly certain unless everyone else does exceptionally bad, I blew this opportunity... for now. Next time I will be prepared.

For any position applied it is important to be able to fully comprehend the knowledge you will be required to prove. I know, the interview process is stressful enough. Let's make it less stressful by preparing ourselves for anything that may be thrown our way. I will be working on my quickbooks knowledge. This seems to be important. And brushing up on my Excel skills. One can never have enough letter writing experience. Most importantly, follow directions. Read everything. Read it twice or three times if necessary. Become familiar with the language and its use. The placement of words can change the entire meaning of a sentence.

It is important to get things right when you need to get them right. It also is important to learn when you get something wrong and not repeat it. Knowledge is power. Next time I will get it right the first time. Next time... because there will be a next time.

News on the job front

So, I heard back regarding that awesome bookkeeping job. They had a few questions and wanted to clarify a few things. No problem. I am thinking, "They responded. This is awesome!" I actually thought that. Of course I wanted to sleep on it to gather my thoughts and respond properly. I just replied and am keeping my fingers crossed, again.

Then, last night while watching t.v. my phone rings. This time it is for a conventional bookkeeping position at a company 5 minutes down the road from me. I had thought this position was filled. Imagine my surprise at hearing from them. I am not all that interested in this particular position as I have already adjusted to the being at home state of mind. Hopefully the contract position will pan out.

I have gotten approval from a few more of the affiliates I was interested in promoting. Not sure how or if it will work. I am not sure of many things. I am sure of not giving up. That and I am in the strangest mood with regards to my choice of music. I do not understand a word of it but the beat is awfully catchy. I am currently listening to Juanes. I guess language does not matter when it comes to music.

Real opportunities require patience and diligence - not necessarily in that order

Today I found a GREAT job opportunity. It is for an experienced bookkeeper and is a telecommute opportunity. I am trying to not get too excited about this but am trying to remain hopeful at the same time. I found this opportunity here. So far a majority of the listings look good. I have checked each site prior to applying for scams and legitimacy. It is important to do this for every work-at-home listing to limit your exposure. Many sites give the same advise - go to a search engine like Google and type in the name of the company or web site and then type scam. Read through many of the different links to see what is being said. If you feel comfortable once you have done your due diligence, then apply. Still be mindful of the information given. Do not give any personal information like social security numbers or bank information unless you are 100% sure of who is getting this information. Even then use extreme caution.

For now I wait with my fingers crossed. I will keep searching and maybe I will be one of the lucky ones with multiple opportunities affording me the flexibility to work from home and be more available to my family. I am truly beginning to believe there is a reason for everything; one door closed, but many others are in front of me just waiting for me to open them.

Affiliate Programs - Are they the way to go?

In day 7 of my search for some way to earn money online I have decided to look into affiliate programs. Now, I have belonged to BookCloseOuts.com for a few years now. Since I only have advertised through email and I only email friend and family (and that is not all that often, by the way) this has not been the most effective venture. I am now branching things out to my spanking new blog - Ta Da! Let's see if that works better - I'll let you know.

Then there is Amazon.com. I have shopped there for years and am almost never let down. I say almost never as no site is perfect. They are a recent addition for me - and again - we'll see how this goes. I would suppose the amount of site traffic would be in direct proportion of my success. This means I need to write about something relevant and poignant. Something worth reading.

I did find some great sites for finding affiliate programs. You can search those sites and apply for the affiliate programs that interest you. The first is LinkShare. They work with sites like Apple iTunes and TigerDirect. It is important to know the sites before you promote them, so I am choosing only sites I have used or have done some research. The other is Commission Junction. They work with sites like Books-A-Million.

There is a link on my sidebar for LinkShare or you can click here. For Commission Junction just click here to apply.

Free Coffee Sample

Time for a FREE coffee break! Just click below to get your free sample of coffee. It's been a long time since I have had Dunkin' Donuts coffee, I hope it is still good!

Dunkin' Donuts. Dunkin' keeps me blogging. Try Dunkin' Donuts Coffee For Free. Get a Sample



Special thanks to the Work At Home Mafia website!

CSA Scholarship Opportunity

CSA is the Czechoslovac Society of America. If you are a member of the CSA you can apply for one of their scholarships.

The general qualifications are: 1) applicant must be a member in good standing of CSA Fraternal Life for a minimum of two (2) continuous years at the time of application, 2) applicant must have at least $5000 face value in permanent life or $1000 in a CSA annuity at the time of application, and 3) must remain a CSA member in good standing throughout the period covered by the award. For a complete description of the rules and regulations click here.

The deadline for applying is March 9th preceding the Fall term for which you are applying.

Good luck!



FAFSA

Do not be fooled by those other sites. Your first stop in your pursuit of college is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You will need last year's tax return. If you filed on your parents' return, then you will need them to assist you. College financial aid departments first have you go through this process in determining your eligibility for scholarships, grants, and student loans. Be mindful of those deadlines and complete your application as soon as possible. The best part is it saves your information so you do not have to re-enter your information year after year. Each year you will go back and update your tax information and receive your new determination. Oh, and do not lose that all important paper with your PIN. This will be mailed to you and you will need this every time you log in.

And while you are on the FAFSA site, find your state and find those deadlines as well. Good luck!

Fast Web Scholarship Site


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