Friday, October 16, 2015

Saving up the money



Hi guys,

Let's talk about the budget of your studying.

I’m going to give you some tips to save up your money, as you prepare your trip to the United States.

The first and probably the easiest way to earn money are by scholarships. Fortunately for you, MiraCosta College offers a lot of scholarships which are available every semester. However, the best part of it is that it is very easy to apply for it.
* Have to mention that scholarship available for currently enrolled students only.
The second way to reduce your expenses is by getting a job on campus.
  • I was personally lucky to get two jobs on campus. My first was to be blogger for the international student’s office and the second one was to work at the library at the circulation desk.  
* The application process and job I will describe in my next blog.

The other following tips might help you to cover a few of your expenses.
  • The “Textbook Loan Program” can help you to get one free book per semester which can be huge money saving. (One book can be more than $300.)
  • Renting books instead of buying them. You can try to rent your books from “amazon”, “chegg” or even the bookstore at MiraCosta College.
  • Another tips for books would be to check at the beginning of the semester, the book your teacher is asking you to buy and check at the library if they have it on reserve so you can borrow them for their and save money.
  • As international student you are offered to use the college insurance. However, it is just an offer but not an obligation to purchase this insurance.  You can research options for health insurance to meet your need.
See you soon.

        


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Library and Information Hub

Good morning future students!! Today I will be writing about building 1200 or in other words Library and Information Hub and services they provide. So, let’s talk about services this building provides on daily base.  

The most popular and helpful service you as international student can find in the library is the Writing Center that can help you with papers assigned in your classes. 

Another helpful service is Math Learning Center which is helping the students all the time if they struggle with Math of any level.  

Some other services that might be helpful for you are: 
  • Hundreds of computers in your full usage with any possible application installed on. Printing, photocopying, and scanning equipment (this is important!). 
  • Friendly librarians that are more that welcome to help you to find any book, text material, and many other sources of information. This is really helpful at the end of the semester.  
  • And last one but not least, library can help you SAVE UP some money on your course’s text materials. For example, if your instructor tells you to get a particular book that cost more than $100 you can check out an instructor’s copy of this book in the library for 2 hours of usage (sometimes even for few days). This time should be enough for you to scan it, do your homework. 
So, feel free to ask me about anything in the library as I’m one of the employee of library building. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

How to travel from Los Angeles to Oceanside

Hey there, this time I will be writing about your planning the first steps in the USA. Most convenient way to get the Oceanside is to arrive directly to San Diego airport, but there are not so many international companies that provide air travel to San Diego, so I will describe how to get from Los Angeles International Airport to Oceanside.   I hope this post will really help you to plan your first trip to the USA.

Actually, the transfer from LAX to Oceanside takes a few steps:
- getting from LAX to Union Station
- taking the train from LA to Oceanside, and the final
- getting to your new home

The first step: after you have passed the security line and got your luggage at the airport you will need to get to Union Station. There are few different ways to do it: taking one of the buses, or taking a taxi cab. This is absolutely up to you which way you get the Union Station, I personally had chosen to get there by bus. The company I used is FlyAway  and it cost me about $8 (taxi might cost about $60).

The second step: After you manage to get to Union Station you will choose which company to use to get the Oceanside. The are two main trains companies that travel to Oceanside: Amtrak and Metrolink. Which one to choose depend on the date and time you arrive to Union Station from LAX. One of those company does not provide the services during the weekends. The trip itself takes about 2.5 hours to get Oceanside, be patient.

The final step: After you arrived to Oceanside Transit Center you need to get your new home. I strongly recommend you to plan this step in advance, if you do not want to spend the night in a motel!!!   Normally, if you had arranged everything in advance the host family would pick you up from the train station, otherwise you need to take a taxi cab to get home.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Apartments; what do they look like around campus

I would like to share with you examples of apartments and how it is usually looks like:




If you have any questions please let me know, I am always glad to help you.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

More informationa about housing! Your bills, deposits and lease contract!

Hello Everyone,
     
Living in an apartment since my 2nd year of college, I have learned all the important details about housing in United States. To find an apartment and move in requires a certain process.

STEP #1 apply for an apartment and sign a lease contract
Lease contract is an agreement between you and apartment owner, where you have to provide all your information and sign in. First of all, they will want your current passport with visa. Also, you need to provide some finance statement that you will be able to pay the rent each month. You can either get a financial statement from your bank, or your I-20 will work as well.
Usually, lease contract is standing for 6 and 12 month. It means you have to stay and pay for your apartment for 6 or 12 month. There is no way to cancel or decline the leasing contract.So be sure you are going to stay for the whole period of time.
     Moreover, before move-in the leasing office want to collect deposit. Deposit means that you pay some amount money to the leasing office in case some of the property will be damaged. If not, you will get your money back at the end of the contract. All apartments have a different deposit amount, but its about $700-1000$ in average.

STEP #2 utilities and other expenses
     Besides paying the rent each month, you also need to pay your utility. It includes internet, water and electricity bills. Usually, for your utilities you can pay online,or write a check. The amount of utilities depends on how much you have been using water, or electricity. For instance, I pay like $150 per month for water, electricity and Wi-Fi internet.  Here is an example of paying bills for water online :
Online Bill Sample
As you can see, everything you need is your bank card information and your address. And your log-in name and password of course ).

To summarize, here is a sample monthly budget for me living in an apartment:
rent:  $ 470 (this is my part of rent that I share with 2 people)
electricity:  $ 60
internet:$ 65
water:  $ 50
phone:  $ 30

I hope this post was helpful for you, and if you have any questions please let me know and text me.



Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Housing Options at MiraCosta

Hello Everyone!
In this post I would like to talk to you about Housing options and share some tips about finding a place to live.  I know, it is not easy to go to college,and find a good and convenient place to live.
First of all, MiraCosta International Office page has all information you need about housing and expenses. Please, follow this link New Student Information to check it out!

There are a couple options for housing :

First, in my opinion, the most useful and helpful place to look for a place is on MiraCosta website page! If you click on Student Housing it will take you to online service for student and and community members wanting to find a roommates. If you open this link, you can see the different options for housing. Now, you need to choose what option do you like and contact the person via e-mail or cell phone. If you choose this option, you will have to buy your own food.

I know that it is very difficult to find a good place from long distance. So, if you have some problems - don't stress! There are other ways to find a place before your arrival. A home stay services can provide you host family and pick up from San Diego Airport. If you like this option, you can also find contact information.  Usually, while you are living with Host family they are providing your food, so you don't have to care about grocery shopping and cooking.

In my own experience, I lived with the host family the first year of my college year and it was a great experience! I still have an excellent relationship with them even I moved out. 
Talking about myself, I am living with a couple MiraCosta students near the college. It is about 7-10 min walking to the college. The complex called "Rancho Tuscana". If you are interested, please check their website Rancho Tuscana Apartments.

and for a 2 bedrooms apartment $1480.
Here is some pictures of Rancho Tuscana Apartments:

I hope this information was helpful for you and good luck with your housing!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Fun Activities on Campus

Hello Everybody! Welcome to my blog.

It's already September and now it is so hot in San Diego.
Today, I would like to tell you a little bit about fun activities in MiraCosta College. Besides classes and studying students also like to have fun at school with your friends. And everething is available here, in MiraCosta campus! During the year MiraCosta has a various events for students. Such as college hour, field trips, club activities and sport competition.

Students can find various clubs on MiraCosta college. We have different language clubs, like Chinese, Japanese, Italian. One of my favorite club is International Club. Clubs usually meets twice a month where they discuss different topics,studying together and plan a field trips! The attending of the club is totally free and this is a great way to meet new people with the same hobbies and interests.


Also, twice of each month we have an college hour, that is usually on Thursdays. College hours are organize by Mira Costa Associated Student Government. Imagine yourself outside sitting on a grass with other students relaxing and enjoying your time. Students have a free lunch and there are speakers and music around. College hour is a great way to have fun during the break or just relax off your classes. Also, during the college hour you might see different organization who is informing students about them and encourage them to join. College hour is a very fun event to attend to make your experience in MiraCosta more memorable and and excited!


Check out our MiraCosta Flicker account to find more amazing pictures from MiraCosta!
Halloween College Hour
College Hour 80th Anniversary
College Hour MiraCosta College