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Table of contents 4 Retrospect is 20/20 Find out what seniors wish they would have known as freshmen on campus 6 The Standard’s advice Looking for some helpful hints from someone you’re not related to?
14 Tweet at me bro Consider following these Twitter feeds after graduation By Nicolette Martin
8 Who’s my graduation speaker? Sadly, John Goodman won’t be at graduation, but these guys are cool too By Kelsey Berry
16 Social media nightmares Don’t mess up your job prospects by having an unprofessional profile By Nicolette Martin
9 Don’t miss the ceremony With three commencement ceremonies, you might need a schedule 10 Party problems Anyone, even you, can pull off a great graduation party under pressure By Lindsey Howard 11 Super heroes deserve gifts too Show your academic adviser some love with a thoughtful thank you gift By Kelsey Berry
12 Money matters Set yourself up for a great financial future when you get your dream job By Megan Gates
18 Light wallet Loan debt can be daunting, but creating a plan to pay it off is the first step By Nicolette Martin 20 Littering is a crime Check out places to donate, or recycle, your stuff before dumping it curbside By Lindsey Howard 22 Stay in touch Just because you’re leaving MSU doesn’t mean you have to sever ties
Standard staff Editorial staff Steph Anderson photo editor Kelsey Berry life editor Theresa Brickman copy editor Josh Campbell photographer Megan Gates editor-in-chief Evan Henningsen photographer Lindsey Howard managing editor Nicolette Martin news editor Cali Shobe copy editor Gage Turner copy editor
Advertising staff Wil Brawley sales Trevor Collins sales Brandi Frye sales Brent Rinehart graphic design Adam Simpson graphic design Professional staff Jack Dimond faculty adviser Sandy King advertising manager
This is a publication of Missouri State University’s student-produced newspaper, The Standard. The university has not approved and is not responsible for its content, which is produced and edited by The Standard staff. The Standard 901 S. National Ave. Springfield, MO 65897 417-836-5272 Standard@MissouriState.edu Cover design by Adam Simpson
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Why didn’t I know that as a
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We all have regrets and things we wish we would have done better in high school. But what if you could avoid some of those regrets during your college years? The Standard spoke with a few graduating seniors to find out what they wish they would have known their freshman year to make college life just a little bit easier. Criminology major
Speech-language pathology major
“Don’t get your fake ID taken away or drink outside [if you’re underage]. Also, always get a taxi!”
Earth science education major
“I wish I knew how well I needed to manage my time. You want to get involved right off the bat but then you end up getting into too much.”
“A few things ... I wish I had known more about what MSU offered and had taken IDS 120 to figure out what my skills Rieta and interests were instead of just jumping into things. And I wish I didn’t have to work all the way through school and could have gotten the full college experience. Also — don’t come into college with a relationship.” Animal science major
“Visit your professors often — they like it. The more they get to know you, the more they are willing to help you out. They will make great contacts for the future.”
Risk management and insurance major
“I wish I would have known that my major was so competitive.” Meyer
Animal science major
Speech-languaage pathology major
Clothing, textile and fashion merchandise major
“Show up to class.”
“I wish I would have gotten involved in things on campus as soon as school started. It’s a lot easier to do it right away Carpenter instead of waiting until sophomore year like I did. I would have made a lot more connections.”
“Don’t procrastinate. Do your homework that day. And buy rainboots because it rains a lot.”
Compiled by Kelsey Berry and Evan Henningsen
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Graduation advice The Standard
The Standard grads offer up their best tips to help you get started on your next journey.
As you may already know, The Standard staff is made up entirely of students and has five members of its staff graduating this spring: Editor-in-Chief Megan Gates, Managing Editor Lindsey Howard, Photo Editor Steph Anderson, and photographers Josh Campbell and Sarah Hiatt. To help them, and our readers, get off on the right foot, we asked former Standard staff members for any advice they might have for graduates.
2008 MSU graduate Reporter, Springfield News-Leader “Don't waste your time comparing your success to your peers'. Instead, take every opportunity to learn, grow or get better in your field. Take everything, including the negative stuff, and use it to your advantage like the version of the ‘Back to the Future’ DeLorean that ran on garbage.”
Trysta Herzog Managing Editor 2008-2009 Kandice McKee 2009 MSU graduate Editor-in-Chief 2008-2009 Publisher/advertiser, From the Nest MSU graduate student “Too often I've seen recent graduates comEditorial director/co-publisher, ing into the work place acting as if they know From the Nest more than those who have been on the job for “As a former graduate, I'd advise to be some time. My advice would be to go in as flexible. The first job may not be the perfect humble as you can and be open to learn from job, but anything to add to a resume is better everyone around you, from the janitor who than a gap.” cleans up at night, all the way up to the top brass.” Sarah Bennett Editor-in-Chief 2010-2011 Jon Poorman 2011 MSU graduate Editor-in-Chief 2011-2012 Reporter, The News-Enterprise 2012 MSU graduate “Turn in all your library books. Have an Sports reporter, awesome party. Remember to thank your parHouston Community Newspapers ents and enjoy whatever time you have left “Don't stress too much if you don't have a before student loans catch up to you.” job lined up right when you graduate. With the job market the way it is right now, it's hard Matt Kile for anyone to get a job, even someone with a Photo Editor 2010-2011 college degree. You just have to focus on 2011 MSU graduate making as many connections as you can and Freelance photographer put yourself out there. Also, don't limit your“I would say I agree with Bennett on the self when searching for a job. I was lucky parents thing. Also, get your stuff together enough to get a job in Houston like I wanted, now, because employers won't give you a ‘B’ but I also applied to a lot of different jobs outfor satisfactory work, they just won't hire side of Texas. You have to give yourself as you.” many options as possible.” Steve Herzog Editor-in-Chief 2007-2008
Compiled by Megan Gates
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Burris is a Missouri State University graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree in computer information systems and a master’s in business administration. He also worked at MSU for 25 years, seven of which he spent serving as the vice president for administrative and information services. Burris was also the chair of the committee that coordinated the design and construction of JQH Arena. Currently, he is Burris the city manager for Springfield and holds the large responsibility of handling all of the city’s affairs. Burris is also the recipient of the O. Franklin Kenworthy Award for Outstanding Leadership — the organization’s highest honor — as well as the Alumni Award for Excellence in Public Affairs from MSU. Burris will speak at the 10 a.m. Commencement Ceremony on May 17.
Greg Burris - 10 a.m. speaker
Stoeffler is the executive editor of the Springfield News-Leader. He graduated from Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wis., after which he spent time reporting and editing at newspapers in Wisconsin, Nebraska and Arizona. With more than 30 years of journalism experience, Stoeffler is an active member of the Springfield community and has been directing the Every Child public service journalism projStoeffler ect to address community issues. Stoeffler will speak at the 1:30 p.m. Commencement Ceremony on May 17.
David Stoeffler - 1:30 p.m. speaker
Suggs graduated from Indiana University with both a B.S. and D.D.S. degree before completing his postgraduate work at Washington University Dental School and Homer G. Phillips Hospital. Currently, he is the publisher and executive director of the St. Louis American Newspaper, Missouri’s largest African-American newspaper. He was the first African-American to be an associate clinical professor at Suggs St. Louis University Dental School as well as the first African-American to become president of the Convention and Visitors Bureau of St. Louis. Suggs was very active in the ‘60s and ‘70s during the Civil Rights movement and was the president of the Alexander-Suggs Gallery of African Art (now the Museum of African Art) for 19 years. Suggs will speak at the 5 p.m. Commencement Ceremony on May 17.
Donald Suggs - 5 p.m. speaker
Compiled by Kelsey Berry
Your graduation guide the-standard.org
You’ve made it to graduation day, but now the pressure’s on to not screw up and miss the ceremony. Use this guide to help plan your day. By Megan Gates The Standard
You’ve made it to graduation day. But now, the pressure’s on to not screw up and miss the ceremony, leaving your parents devastated that they don’t have that photo of you accepting your diploma. All three ceremonies are expected to last 90 minutes and as a graduate, you won’t be allowed to take anything (purses, umbrellas, etc) in with you to Hammons Student Center to get ready for the ceremony, so plan accordingly. Also, grads will line up in two lines in the HSC to get ready for the commencement ceremony. The right hand line will sit on the left hand side of JQH Arena (facing the stage) and the left hand line will sit on the right hand side of the arena. If you want to sit next to someone in the graduation ceremony, make sure your friend is in front of or behind you in line in the HSC, or you’ll be separated. Below is a schedule of where you need to be, and when, on graduation day so you won’t miss your photo op!
This is for the College of Health and Human Services, College of Natural and Applied Sciences and the William H. Darr School of Agriculture. Doors open to JQH Arena: 9 a.m., no ticket is required and no reserved seating Graduates assemble: No later than 9:15 a.m. on the main floor of Hammons Student
10 a.m. ceremony
Center Approximate end: Around 11:30 a.m. and graduates will be marched out of the northwest entrance of JQH Arena Meet with guests: Pick a destination before graduation to meet your guests at after the ceremony
This is for the College of Business. Doors open to JQH Arena: 12:30 p.m., no ticket is required and no reserved seating Graduates assemble: No later than 12:45 p.m. on the main floor of Hammons Student Center Approximate end: Around 3 p.m. and graduates will be marched out of the northwest entrance of JQH Arena Meet with guests: Pick a destination before graduation to meet your guests at after the ceremony
1:30 p.m. ceremony
This is for the College of Arts and Letters, College of Education, College of Humanities and Public Affairs and global studies majors. Doors open to JQH Arena: 4 p.m., no ticket is required and no reserved seating Graduates assemble: No later than 4:15 p.m. on the main floor of Hammons Student Center Approximate end: Around 6:30 p.m. and graduates will be marched out of the northwest entrance to JQH Arena Meet with guests: Pick a destination before graduation to meet your guests at after the ceremony
5 p.m. ceremony
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Party planning problems 10 | Graduation 2013
If you haven’t planned a graduation party, don’t panic yet. We’ve got you covered.
By Lindsey Howard The Standard
reservations. Otherwise, you may have older people falling asleep while waiting for a table, or younger guests throwing a tantrum because their tummy is hungry. The sooner you make reservations, the better. Select a list of your favorite restaurants and see which ones allow them, then make sure you allow enough time to leave graduation, get out of the parking lot and drive to the restaurant of choice.
You’re finally graduating. In a few days, you will line up in Hammons Student Center, walk into JQH Arena in front of your friends and family, and collect your empty diploma cover. Then, it’s time to celebrate! But wait … you don’t have anything planned and your friends and family are looking to you for what to do now. Don’t fret! You can still have a great after-gradua- Invite people to your tion party, even if you haven’t been plan- apartment If you don’t have any plans for after ning it since the first day of your senior graduation and you have a small group of year. guests, consider inviting them to see where Take guests out to dinner you’ve been living while in college. The You still have time to make reservations day before graduation, visit a supermarket for an after-graduation dinner at one of and buy some finger foods and beverages to Springfield’s many restaurants. If you don’t serve. Don’t just set out the leftover case of want to have to wait for a table on a busy Natty from your Dead Day pregaming and Friday night, it’s best to find a restaurant some stale Cheetos you found in the back of that is suited to all guests’ tastes that takes a cabinet.
If you are going to have family and friends over, don’t forget to clean up! You don’t want your poor 90-year-old grandma sitting in a pile of your dirty laundry. Also, don’t forget to let your roommates know if you are going to be having people over. Everyone involved will feel awkward if a roommate drunkenly stumbles into the apartment with a booty call while you’re having a family meal.
If you really have your heart set on throwing a grand party with all your friends and family, consider having it days or even weeks after your actual graduation. This will give you more time to secure a location, send out invitations giving everyone plenty of advance notice and to purchase all the necessities. You will have the time to decide if, and how, you are going to feed guests. Will you be making food, buying it, or having a caterer? What about a cake? Decora-
Plan a party for later
tions? Beverages? By pushing your graduation party back if you don’t already have one planned, you and your guests will be better prepared.
If you don’t have any guests who are coming to watch you graduate, or they have to leave as soon as the ceremony is done, celebrate with friends in similar situations. Spend time with your fellow grads as well as friends who will still be in school and you will be leaving behind. Go out downtown for dinner and drinks, have a movie night, or plan some other fun activity you all enjoy. Graduation is an exciting time and a reason to celebrate. Don’t let yourself become stressed by your lack of planning. No matter what you decide to do after the ceremony is over, just remember to have fun and enjoy the time you have left before real life begins.
Hang out with friends
A token of thanks
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Your adviser has probably been there for you, your personal cheerleader, throughout your college experience. Graduation is a great time to thank them for their support and showing them you care.
I have come to the conclusion that my adviser is some kind of superhero. Say I have a question about my degree audit? She’s there. In a panic because I can’t find the class I want to register for? She’s there. Send her a dumb question by email at 1 a.m.? She’s there — within the hour. She has become my educational Jedi Knight who takes on the challenge of guiding me through my hectic time at MSU. Some of you may not have had the same experience that I was so fortunate to have, but for those of you who would consider your adviser to be as awesome as mine, the question looms: What kind of thank you gift do you buy a superhero? Don’t you fear, college graduates. There are plenty of great ways to express your gratitude as you complete your final few
Kelsey Berry Life Editor weeks at MSU. Here are a few gifts that you might consider before you just break down and buy the superman cape. A card. Yes, I know this seems a little lame, but cards are really the best way to express your gratitude with words. Not to mention, if you feel at all weird about giving your professor a gift, remember that
giving a card is a perfectly appropriate way to express your gratitude in the professional world. Something sweet. Think back to any conversations or class discussions you’ve had with your adviser. Did he or she tell you about a pet? Or a favorite hobby? Maybe you noticed several duck figurines in his or her office? Check out one of the many local thrift shops or vintage stores to find a unique figurine to add to his or her collection. Chances are, he or she will think of you every time they see it. Or in a more literal sense, you could buy your adviser a sweet treat. Because who doesn’t love chocolate, right? A framed photograph. Sometimes faculty members will hang framed pictures or group photos from years ago to remind
them of former students they’ve had. So why not give your adviser the gift of seeing your beautiful face every day, even after you’re long gone? If you’ve taken any school-related trips with your classmates and adviser, try to find a good group photo that will remind them of the great learning experiences you all had together. Coffee. Most of us see them with this beverage in hand quite often anyway, so save your adviser a few dollars and buy them a bag of good quality roast. If you can’t manage to get your hands on some coffee grounds, another great option would be a Starbucks gift card. That way, when your adviser starts losing steam, they can grab your gift card and head right over to the Starbucks conveniently located in the Plaster Student Union for a free drink.
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Financial The Standard
Getting your dream job is about ideal location. You also need to the right questions and settting yo
Like most graduates, I’m embarking on that wonderful journey called the job search. And while I’m looking into newsMegan paper reporter positions in areas I’d like to live in, I also know that’s not the only thing Gates I need to be looking for in my first job. Editor-inI also need to set myself up for a successful financial future, and that means Chief doing my homework on my next employer and my options. Thankfully, I have my mother (an accountant), Jack Hunter (the Salary talk Career Center director), CNN Money and Regardless of your career path, you former professors on my side to help me, should make sure that you’ll be earning a and you, make great decisions. living wage wherever you end up. To find out what the cost of living is in an area, Setting up a 401(k) check out Salary.com, which allows you to You’ve probably seen this before, but put in where you live now and the money like me, had no idea of what it meant until you make and compare it to other cities someone actually explained it to you. For and what you would need to make there to me, that explanation came in the form of have the same standard of living. my Macroeconomics textbook co-written This information will give you an idea by Ben Bernanke, the chairman of the Fed- of the kind of money you need to be makeral Reserve. ing at your job to support yourself in your A 401(k), aka a defined contribution lifestyle. However, you shouldn’t bring up plan, is a retirement account where you can the issue of salary when you first start an choose to have a portion of your salary interview, said Jack Hunter, director of automatically put into an account, and your MSU’s Career Center. employer may match your contributions. If your potential employer doesn’t menThe money is then invested with your tion salary during the interview, Hunter input of where you want it to go, and hope- said it’s appropriate to ask at the end of the fully will increase in value while you’re interview, ‘can you provide me informaworking to help you save for retirement. tion about compensation?’ Taxes on your account are deferred until Prior to the interview, do your research you begin withdrawing from it. You can and find out information about the compabegin taking money out without a 10 per- ny you’re applying to and see what its cent penalty fee once you reach 59-and-a- salary levels and practices are like, if it’s half. available. You can also look up informaIf you leave a job where you have a tion about tax levels in different states, 401(k), you can choose to roll it over into because gas taxes, income taxes and praca mutual fund or brokerage firm, you may tices for retirement income vary from state be able to move it to your new employer’s to state, Hunter said. 401(k) options, you can leave your 401(k) Check out CNN’s Money Magazine with your old employer, or you can with- website at https://money.cnn.com for draw all of your money and face a penalty. resources that will help you find the inforThis is the Reader’s Digest version, but mation you need. for more specifics visit CNN Money’s Ultimate Guide to Retirement at Benefits https://money.cnn.com/retirement/guide.
more than just finding one in the make sure that you’re asking yourself up for financial success.
More important than salary level, though, are the benefits that come with a job. These can be anything from health insurance to dental insurance to child care, and are all negotiable, Hunter said. “I’d rather have a good, but not spectacular salary and great benefits,” Hunter said, because benefits can be up to 17 to 25 percent of additional compensation that’s not taxable and can be negotiated with your employer. You should wait until the final stages of your interviewing process to discuss the specifics of benefits, such as when you go for an in-person meeting with the person you’d be reporting to at your new job, Hunter said. Employers have different methods of packaging benefits, and one such method is the cafeteria style method where you have a given amount, say $1,200 a month, to choose what sort of benefits you would like your employer to provide. Even if your employer says that something is “the standard” benefits package, take time to look it over for yourself and make sure that it’s the best plan for you, Hunter said. “Don’t assume that what your employer thinks is in your best interest,” he said, suggesting that you look over the benefit options with someone else you trust to provide you with good advice. Most importantly, Hunter said that you shouldn’t be afraid to ask to negotiate with your employer, because they’re not going to pull a job offer if you want to negotiate your benefits. “And if they do, you don’t really want to work for that company anyways,” he said.
According to my Macroeconomics professor Per Norander, the average person should save $2 million for retirement. And that is a scary big number. So how should you do it? Start saving and investing immediately is the word on
the street. Take out a percentage of your paycheck automatically each month and put it in a savings account for your rainy day fund. If you wait until the end of the month, odds are you’ll have nothing to save. Also, consider setting up an IRA, or individual retirement account. There are two main kinds, a traditional IRA and a Roth IRA, that are usually discussed. In a traditional IRA, you don’t pay taxes on the money you put in, but when you withdraw money, you will pay taxes on it. You can begin withdrawing whenever you want to, but you’ll pay a 10 percent penalty fee if you withdraw before you turn 59-and-a-half, according to CNN Money. In a Roth IRA, you pay taxes on the money you put into it, but when you withdraw your money, you won’t pay taxes on it. There are income limits for a Roth IRA, less than $157,000 if you’re married and filing a joint tax return, less than $105,000 if you’re single or filing separate from your spouse and you didn’t live together during the year, and less than $10,000 if you’re married, filing a separate tax return and you live with your spouse. Talk with your bank to find out what option might be best for you and to help you get started. Odds are, at some point you’re going to move away from Springfield to start a job. One question worth asking is whether the company you’re going to work for provides a moving allowance. Moving allowances are funds you can use for gas, a moving company, etc., to help pay for your move to your new city. Hunter said when his son moved from Washington, D.C., to Illinois, his employer paid for his move and helped him sell his house to ease the process. As someone who can’t fit a mattress in my vehicle, this could come in handy should I need a U-haul.
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Twitter trendsetters 14 | Graduation 2013
With a smart phone always in our pockets and Twitter always on hand, organizations in the same field as them and make connections. Check out • @Inc — Inc. — “Everything you need to know to start and grow your business now” • @MarketWatch — MarketWatch — “Tracking the pulse of the markets. Get business news, personal finance information and real-time commentary from MarketWatch” • @CNBC — CNBC — “First in Business Worldwide” • @ReutersBiz — Reuters Business — “Reuters business news” • @Forbes — Forbes — “Official Twitter account of http://Forbes.com, homepage for the world’s business leaders”
Compiled by Nicolette Martin
• @wired — Wired — “Wired’s official Twitter feed” • @TechCrunch — TechCrunch — “Breaking Technology News and Opinions from TechCrunch” • @ForbesTech — Forbes Tech News — “Tech news and insights from Forbes” • @mikeyk — Mike Krieger — “Cofounder @instagram. Brasileiro by birth, now in SF” • @Chad_Hurley — Chad Hurley — “Co-Founder, YouTube; CEO, AVOS Systems”
• @ariannahuff — Arianna Huffington — “President and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group” • @Reuters — Reuters Top News — “Sharing breaking news from around the world” • @ProPublica — ProPublica — “We’re a non-profit, independent newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest” • @nytimesphoto — NYT Lens — “Tweeting about photography & visual journalism in the news and on our radar” • @AP — The Associated Press — “News, discussion and a behind-the-scenes look at the process from the Associated Press”
for professionals the-standard.org
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following graduation, it’s easy for young professionals to follow people and these accounts Twitter recommends you follow depending on your field.
• @ReutersScience — Reuters Science News — “From newly chartered astronomical anomalies at the far reaches of the universe to the rise of nanotechnology, nobody covers science like Reuters.com” • @nytimesscience — NYT Science — “Science, Environment, Space and Cosmos News” • @whitehouseostp — The White House OSTP — “Official Twitter account of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy” • @TheScienceGuy — Bill Nye — “Science Educator seeks to change the world...” • @sciam — Scientific American — “Scientific American, more than 165 years of science news”
• @HHSGov – U.S. Department of Health and Human Services — “News and info from U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services” • @DrSanjayGupta — Dr. Sanjay Gupta, staff neurosurgeon at Emory Clinic — “CNN Chief Medical Correspondent” • @FDArecalls — U.S. FDA — “Get notified about the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recalls” • @CDC_eHealth — Centers for Disease Control — “CDC social media, including: videos, eCards, widgets, Twitter chats” • @NIHforHealth — National Institute for Health — “NIH ... Turning Discovery into Health”
• @Gov — Twitter Government — “Updates from the Twitter Government & Politics team, tracking creative & effective uses of Twitter for civic engagement” • @WhiteHouse — The White House — “Follow ... for the latest news and ways to engage with President Obama and the administration” • @TheJusticeDept — U.S. Justice Department — “Official DOJ Twitter account” • @usedgov — U.S. Department of Education — “News and information from the U.S. Department of Education” • @StateDept — U.S. Department of State — “Tweets from Secretary Kerry are signed JK”
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We have grown up on Facebook. The popular social media site has witnessed our first prom, our first day of college, our first shot, our first spring break and nearly all of our Nicolette life’s memories from high school up until Martin graduation from college. And while we like to share our pictures of News our lunches, pictures of our pets and thoughts Editor about life and the world, not everything we feel comfortable sharing with friends should be shared with potential employers. finally accomplished. So, as graduation approaches and the “real Get rid of your status talking about how world” looms in the future, take some time to much you hate work, school, your teachers, clean out your social media accounts so as not etc. to make the wrong impression when searching for the job of your dreams. Keep your childhood photo of you and your best friend swimming with floaties. Keep professional photo of you and your Get rid of: your photo from freshman best friend before prom. year’s spring break on the beach with beer Get rid of photos of you and your under- bongs. age friends drinking and smoking after prom. Keep your favorite inspirational quotes, Keep likes of your favorite (appropriate) favorite appropriate song lyrics and favorite movies, books, music. appropriate movie quotes. Get rid of likes of inappropriate celebriGet rid of: any derogatory or expletiveties, racist organizations or anything that filled Lil Wayne lyrics in your “Favorite Quocould harm your reputation. tations” section.
Keep your status telling everyone how Keep likes of your favorite organizations thankful you are for your friends and family or charities. for helping you accomplish that big goal you Get rid of likes of anything promoting
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MESS You can have personality on social media, but always keep it professional, like my Twitter biography above.
Any and all of these spring (or summer) cleaning activities can be applied to any social media site you may use. As graduation nears, it’s important to think about the future and how you’d like to present yourself to future employers. When you go to clean out the questionable content on
your social media sites, go by this rule of thumb: if you don’t want your grandma to see it, don’t post it. Most of us wouldn’t want our grandma to see us posting photos of naked women holding cheeseburgers or doing a ski shot over winter break. Keep it classy.
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Photo Illustration by Josh Campbell/THE STANDARD
Paying back your college loans can be daunting and rough on your wallet. But there are options available to defer your loans if youâ€™re struggling to find the funds to pay them off after graduation.
Graduation 2013 | 19
What about my student debt?
A lot of graduating seniors are leaving college with some loan debt. Make sure you have a plan to start paying it back once you’re no longer a student.
By Nicolette Martin The Standard
Many seniors, following graduation, find themselves packing up their belongings, searching for jobs and, in many cases, moving back in with their parents. But what happens when your post-grad status sends those student loan collectors calling? Most private student loan lenders and federal loans offer options for repayment to students who may be lacking in the money department.
Deferment is a period during which repayment of both the principal and interest of your loan is temporarily delayed, and there are many situations that allow you to
apply for a loan deferment. During a loan deferment, you do not need to make payments. • If you’re enrolled at least halftime in college or career school — you can defer Direct Loans, FFEL loans and Perkins Loans • If you’re studying in an approved graduate fellowship program or approved rehabilitation training program for the disabled — you can defer Direct Loans, FFEL loans and Perkins Loans. • If you’re unemployed or unable to find full-time employment — you can defer Direct Loans, FFEL loans and Perkins Loans for up to three years • If you’re experiencing economic hardship (includes Peace Corps service) — you can defer Direct Loans, FFEL loans and
Perkins Loans for up to three years • If you’re in an active duty military service during a war, military operation or national emergency — you can defer Direct Loans, FFEL loans and Perkins Loans Most deferments require a request to the organization that handles your loan account. To defer a Perkins Loan, you must contact the school where you received the loan, and to request a Direct Loan or FFEL loan deferment, you must contact your loan servicer. You may be eligible for forbearance if you don’t qualify for a deferment, but you can’t make your scheduled loan payments. If granted forbearance, you could be
able to stop making a monthly payment for up to 12 months. There are two types of forbearance: discretionary and mandatory. Discretionary forbearance is up to your loan lender to decide whether you can receive forbearance, and could be granted for issues such as financial hardship or illness. Mandatory forbearance is when your lender is required to grant forbearance if you meet the criteria, which include: • Serving in a medical or dental internship, or residency program • If the total amount you owe for all of your student loans is 20 percent or more of your monthly gross income • Performing teaching service that would qualify for teacher loan
forgiveness • Qualifying for partial repayment of your loans under the U.S. Department of Defense Student Loan Repayment Program • You are a member of the National Guard and have been activated by a governor but are not eligible for a military deferment. Like loan deferment, you must request forbearance from your loan servicer. To view information about all of the federal student loans you have received and to find contact information for the loan servicer, visit the National Student Loan Data System at http://www.nslds.ed.gov. For more information about federal student aid, visit http://www.studentaid.ed.gov.
Don’t just dump your stuff 20 | Graduation 2013
Before moving out, take a moment to sort through your belongings and find By Lindsey Howard The Standard
As the end of the school year approaches, Springfield will be filled with people moving. Whether you’re moving from one apartment in the city to another, back to your hometown, or to cities and places unknown, moving also means the unavoidable task of packing up all the things you’ve accumulated in your time here. But, do you really need to take those clothes you haven’t worn since freshman year with you? Or what about that TV set that’s broken beyond repair? Thankfully, there are places you can donate, or get rid of, those things that you will no longer need. One item you should tackle is
your clothing. If you still have Tshirts from high school taking up hangers in your closet, or clothes you outgrew sophomore year falling out of your dresser, it’s time to consider finally parting ways with them. First, you should assess the quality of the clothing. If it is ripped, stained or in bad condition, throw it away. If, however, it is in good condition, consider selling or donating. There are several places in Springfield that will buy gently used clothes, including Plato’s Closet, located at 1258 E. Battlefield Road, and Uptown Cheapskate, at 1724 E. Battlefield Road. If you can’t, or don’t want to, sell your clothes, you can always donate them. Check out places such as the Salvation Army, located at 1737 S. Campbell Ave. The organization accepts donations Monday
through Friday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Another option is Red Racks, which has three locations in Springfield — 1711 N. Glenstone Ave., 1749 S. Campbell Ave. and 2855 S. Kansas Expressway. Both the Salvation Army and Red Racks also offer pick-up service.
The first thing to consider regarding electronics is if it is still functional or not. If it is damaged or broken beyond repair, consider recycling it at the Computer Recycling Center, located at 1434 N. National Ave. The center is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and most electronics can be recycled for free. The center accepts monitors, laptops, TVs, keyboards, printers, speakers, cellphones and more.
Photo Illustration by Evan Henningsen/THE STANDARD
Before throwing your clothes away, sort through them to see if you can sell them to a store that buys used clothing; or see if you can donate them.
on the curb the-standard.org
if donation, or recycling, is an option.
For a full list of accepted items, visit http://www.computerrecyclingcenter.org. The center will also pick up items, and a pickup can be scheduled by calling 417-8662588. Other places to recycle include Best Buy, located at 3450 S. Glenstone Ave. The store accepts three items per household per day and has some restrictions, including TVs larger than 32 inches, which must be picked up or hauled away for a fee. Visit http://www.bestbuy.com/recycling for restrictions and more information. If the item is still functioning, consider donating it instead. The Salvation Army accepts electronics, appliances, household items and much more. Visit http://www.centralusa.salvationarmy.org for a full list of accepted items.
cost-effective to sell your furniture — if it’s in good condition — and buy new furniture for your new home. Ask around campus to find underclassmen who might be moving into apartments and need furniture. Another option is to post in the Missouri State Facebook group Free & For Sale, or on Craigslist. If it’s on its last leg and isn’t worth trying to sell or donate, throw it out. If you don’t have several buff friends that can help you take it to a dumpster, companies such as 1800-GOT-JUNK? will come pick up and haul away a wide variety of items for a fee. Visit its website, http://www.1800gotjunk.com, for pricing and more information. Moving out and packing can be a hassle, but you can save yourself time by getting rid of unwanted or unneeded items early. Be sure to get rid of items responsibly; don’t Furniture just assume the trash fairy is going to come If you’re moving far away, furniture can collect that rusty old futon with the spring be a pain to take with you. Often, it’s more poking out from the curb outside your house.
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Keeping up with MSU The Standard
Just because you’re graduating doesn’t mean you can’t keep in touch with your alma mater.
Missouri State has a wide variety of ways for graduates to keep in touch with the university, to connect with former university students and to let the university know what you’ve been up to after graduation. Below are just some of the many resources you can use to maintain your Bear pride!
Missouri State University Alumni Association provides ways for all alumni to stay in touch, informed and involved with their alma mater without paying dues, according to its website. Website: https://alumni.missouristate.edu Facebook: Missouri State University Alumni Association Twitter: @MarooNation
Missouri State Alumni of St. Louis is a group of alumni from Missouri State that live in the St. Louis area and regularly get together to support MSU, according to its Twitter profile. Website: Not available Facebook: Missouri State Alumni of St. Louis Twitter: @MoStateAlumniSTL
Missouri State University Foundation was created in 1981 and encourages participation of people with interest in higher education to support it through private donations, according to its website. Website: https://www.missouristatefoundation.org
The Standard is the student-run newspaper that has covered MSU for more than 100 years and provides breaking news updates about all aspects of the university. Website: https://www.the-standard.org Facebook: The Standard Twitter: @TheStandard_MSU
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