Summer 2014 Will Be Remembered by Pharrell’s “Happy”

Pharrell Williams "Happy"

(Photo Credit: Digital Spy)

When we look back 20 years from now, we will define Summer 2014 by Pharrell Williams’ “Happy.” “Happy” is the hit track from Williams’ second album, Girl (2014), and the Despicable Me 2 (2013) soundtrack.  The song calls each individual to love being who he or she really is.  It’s becoming increasingly more lucid where we are right now in the postmodern epoch is a time when too many individuals suffer from psychic fragmentation.  Too many people have become so focused on being what others want them to be that they don’t even know who they really are any longer—it’s possible they never even gave themselves a chance to learn who they really are. With the release of “Happy,” Williams offers a valuable counter-narrative to the dominant American narrative that says who you really are isn’t good enough, and to be good enough you need to be someone you aren’t.

The challenge to the status quo “Happy” presents begins with the song’s ingenious author, Pharrell Williams.  Although we’re living in a time when people highly embrace flashy phenomena they hope will make them standout, Williams finds peace in simple elegance.  He knows how to make simple clothing, clothing that’s not flashy, refreshingly elegant.  When we see Mr. Williams, we’re witnessing a human being who has been liberated from the postmodern impulse to be someone he’s not.  “Happy” has given us an opportunity to experience the true substance that composes Pharrell.  Through his amazingly successful song, music fans are provided with a powerful alternative to the prevalent fear countless individuals have about loving who they truly are.

“Happy” has been #1 on the Billboard Top 100 and #1 on music charts in 19 countries.  Even with this song’s great success and wide popularity, it does not seem to have had any meaningful impact on changing America’s fascination with the superficial over the substantial.  One of the primary reasons for this could be how distracted we can get with hot beats that make us dance.  Unfortunately, we too often don’t want to reflect on why these beats make us want to dance in the first place. If we would engage more closely with the positive messages of “Happy,” it’s possible for us to move closer to understanding the value of diversity, and we might even start cherishing diversity.  This will require us to move past the hot beats and the dancing those beats promote and develop into a more reflective people.  Critical reflection enable us to see how Pharrell’s song can be employed as a vehicle to engender a massive wave of camaraderie and harmony among sundry people across the nation and globe who are presently divided.

For the real power of the song to be unleashed, it will take intellectuals, scholars, activists, community leaders, religious leaders, politicians, teachers, and many others to muster the courage to host nationwide forums, lectures, debates, and etc. where substantive discourse can take place about the song and how its messages can be used to instigate change in America and across the world.

Music has the ability to transform lives, to transform nations.

Even though Williams’ song may not produce the type of critical discourse across the nation and globe it merits, the song’s staying power will give us an opportunity to heed its vital messages even 20 years from now.  When we take a moment to envision a nation and world that mirrors the one offered by the music video for “Happy,” we begin to acknowledge how priceless the song is.  The song helps us to realize that our differences should unite us instead of divide us.  “Happy” seems to suggest that our differences shouldn’t cause us to lose sight of our universal longing for happiness.

History will inevitably mark Summer 2014 as a watershed moment in world history when “Happy” caused people to think seriously about the importance of simply being themselves.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Kids and Technology: Set an Example While They’re Young

Children and Technology

(Photo Credit: Digital Trends)

As most parents know, your kids are watching you all of the time.  You don’t have to sit down and have a formal conversation with them to teach them things; even kids who seem like they rarely pay attention are observing and learning from your behavior.

As your kids start getting their first smartphones, tablets and laptops, you want them to be responsible. You don’t want them to spend all day in front of a screen, and you want them to be kind to others over the Internet.  One of the best ways to ensure that your kids are responsible with their technology is to be a great role model with your own devices.

With this in mind, the following tips can help parents set an excellent example with their use of technology.

One of the best things parents can do to be good technology role models is to turn their devices off as often as possible—and definitely during family time.  While you might be excited about your new LG Optimus or the latest iPhone and all of the features and apps that can help your busy schedule, if you are on it all of the time, then your children will mimic your actions when they get their own phones.

Moreover, each time we take a quick peek at our texts while aiding our kids with their homework, or each time we interrupt them to say, “I’m sorry, I have to answer this email really quickly,” we’re sending a clear message that we prefer technology over people, claims Dot Complicated.

When your children get their own devices, you will still want them to pay attention to you, so when they are speaking to you, make sure to be fully present with them.  Resist the urge to constantly check emails and texts, and instead give them your full attention.  You also can avoid the distractions by setting some family rules about screen time.  For example, no phones or tablets at the dinner table.  Be sure to follow the rules you establish.

Limit Your Game Time

Yes, you’ve been trying desperately to get past level 199 in Candy Crush so you can crow about it to all of your friends on Facebook.  However, as DigiParenthood notes, keep in mind that your kids are keenly observing how much time you spend playing games on your phone.  Show them the importance of discipline, and that work should come before pleasure by finishing your necessary tasks first.  Finish your chores around the house, help your kids with their homework and walk the dog all before sitting down to play a game.

Many time limit apps out there such as TimeLock, allow parents to designate a certain amount of time their child can use the device.  This is a wonderful tool for you to track how long they spend on the Internet each day, and you can set your own time limits to show your kids that you limit your game time as well.

Be a Good Social Media Citizen

We can talk to our kids about the importance of privacy on social media sites until we are blue in the face, but if our Facebook page is full of posts about personal experiences and situations, our words will probably fall on deaf ears.  Use social media very carefully, and never post anything you wouldn’t want your young children to see—because chances are they will.  Also, be kind and polite while online, even when others are rude; this will help to show your kids the importance of online etiquette.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

The Haves and the Have Nots’ Post-Accident Benny

Tyler Lepley

(Photo Credit: Kontrol Magazine)

Benjamin “Benny” Young (Tyler Lepley) is emerging as a more interesting and complex character since the accident he was involved in that landed him in the hospital.  Fans of Tyler Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots are witnessing a Benny who seems to have greater zeal than he had before the accident.  When he speaks now, he does not have any reservations.  Before the accident, Benny wouldn’t use profanity around Hannah Young (Crystal R. Fox), his mother, but now he says exactly what he wants to say—with little to no regret.  Hannah is even surprised by how blunt Benny is now. She frequently has to look at him and tell him that he needs to calm down.  It will be interesting to see if we’re about to see the full manifestation of his spunk, a spunk that shares deep affinities to Candace Young’s (Tika Sumpter), his sister.

Benny, the Uniter

Benny appears to be making a stronger effort to bring Candace and Hannah closer together.  One of his chief failures (thus far) in attempting to eviscerate the barriers that exist between Candace and Hannah is the omission of a challenge for Hannah to employ the powerful faith she has in God to help her to have a true willingness to close the gulf between her and her daughter.  Benny has heard his mother talk about God all of his life, and he seems to have grown a little tired of hearing her speak about God, especially when they continue to experience the struggle of surviving with very limited financial resources.

Benny’s Potential Danger

Although Benny’s new passion is refreshing, he has to be careful about seeking revenge on Quincy (Medina Islam), Candace’s baby daddy.  From what we know right now, it appears that Quincy murdered his baby.  If Quincy will murder a baby, then you know he doesn’t mind killing Benny. Benny, therefore, shouldn’t allow his anger to metastasize into wrath.  It’s clear that Quincy doesn’t mind going to prison, and Benny shouldn’t let him lead him on a path that leads to prison, the hospital or the grave.  Hopefully, Candace and Hannah will be able to communicate to him the importance of remaining calm and logical.  While it may seem to be the right thing to go after Quincy for murdering Candace’s baby (and for whatever he did to her before he went to prison), Benny is a good man and has much more to lose than Quincy does.  If Benny elects to take the law into his own hands, he could do more harm than good.

Conclusion

On July 22, 2014, fans of the show will have an opportunity to see if Benny will make tragic mistakes. Unchecked rage often leads to destruction.  Benny has to understand that Quincy is Satan in the flesh, and all Quincy comes to do is steal, kill and destroy.  Will Benny pass this test of his faith?  We learn the answer to this question on the next episode of Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

3 Tips to Afford College in the 21st Century

Affording College

(Photo Credit: Iowa Lakes Community College)

It’s expensive to attend college in the 21st century.  The average cost of tuition and fees at a four-year public university was $8,893 for the 2013-14 academic year, according to the College Board. Average private school tuition was $30,094, while out-of-state tuition at public schools averaged just over $22,000.  None of these figures include room and board.  Unless you’re a great athlete, a 4.0 student with a near-perfect SAT or ACT score or independently wealthy, you’re going to need to find funding sources beyond Pell grants.  In this piece, you’re offered ways to help you to afford college that you may not have considered.

Participate in Medical Studies

Research for new drugs, psychological treatments and other medical procedures are mostly performed on university campuses.  University of Nebraska journalism student Elias Youngquist told Al Jazeera America he needs money for college expenses and to buy his girlfriend an engagement ring.  He discovered that Celerion, a clinical research firm in Lincoln, Nebraska was in Phase 1 testing of a new anti-depressant and needed human subjects for the trials.

Youngquist spent a few hours at the company’s laboratories for two weekends, despite being warned of side effects ranging from psychosis to suicide.  He ended up earning more than $1,000 for a few hours of time and a little discomfort.  Tommy Dornish, another University of Nebraska student, said he’s earned $20,000 in four years being a guinea pig for Celerion.

Check with your university hospital for upcoming paid research trials on campus.  You can also inquire with the psychology, chemistry and biology departments.  Just Another Lab Rat and ClinicalTrials.gov can help you find paid trials in your area.

Become an Egg or Sperm Donor

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 12% of married couples have fertility issues in one form or another.  Groups such as Single Mothers By Choice advocate passionately for sperm and eggs from donors.

Sperm donors can earn as much as $1,000 per month by simply donating three times per week at places like Northwest Cryobank in Spokane, Washington and Missoula, Montana.  Generally, the only requirements are that you’re STD-free, above a certain height (generally 5’10 or above) and drug-free.

Due to the fact a vast majority of recipients are white couples, most donors must also be white.  The largest sperm bank in the world, Cryos International, is even more picky.  It stopped accepting sperm from redheads in 2011, The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported.

Egg donors can earn significantly more.  The Center For Human Reproduction in New York has a total compensation package of $8,000.  The process takes about one month and can produce anywhere from five to 35 total eggs.

Bootstrapping

This term, bootstrapping, is generally applied to entrepreneurs exhausting every avenue to come up with startup capital for their new business.  College is a de-facto business investment, and students can use many of the same methods entrepreneurs do.

Use websites like Scholarships.com and Fast Web to search for demographic and major-specific scholarships you may qualify for.  Students who inherited annuities from their grandparents may be able to sell their future payments to J.G. Wentworth or a similar company.  You can even create a campaign on crowdfunding sites like Campus Slice and see what happens.

College is getting more expensive with each passing year.  By thinking creatively, you can experience greater success in reaching your financial goals.  This will require you to think beyond the traditional funding sources, however.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Great Leaders Don’t Micromanage

Micromanager

(Photo Credit: The Self Employed)

One of the most deflating and unproductive environments to work in is one led by a micro-manager. How do you when you’re being led by a micro-manager? He or she always has to control everything in the organization.  His or her fingerprints has to be on everything.  The micro-manager is inflexible and does not give you latitude to employ your talents in ways that empower you to achieve maximum success.  Organizational leaders must understand that being effective leaders does not mean controlling everything.  In fact, leaders who are micro-managers are often highly ineffective.

Micromanagement inevitably leads to an organization’s tragic downfall.

Great leaders trust their subordinates to use their talents to execute their assigned tasks.  Although there’s nothing wrong with monitoring what one’s subordinates are doing, as long as the monitoring doesn’t become constant and oppressive surveillance, people need to have enough freedom to make choices that enable them to work without fear.  If your subordinates feel they’re going to receive reprimands for the least thing, then you have engendered an environment where fear trumps productivity.

If you’re a leader who can do everything in your organization better than everyone else, then you don’t have much of an organization in the first place.  It’s important for organizational leaders to maintain a democratic system of governance.  A democratic system of governance allows for everyone to feel a part of the organization. Everyone needs to have his or her voice heard and valued in an organization. A great leader encourages critical thinking and discourse; a micro-manager discourages them.

If your leader is a micro-manager, then he or she is allowing his or her ego to drive the way in which he or she leads.

Great leaders don’t offer suggestions about how you could have done a task differently or “better” each time you perform it.  In fact, great leaders frequently sit back and learn from their subordinates and appreciate the value they bring to the organization.  The effective leader is more concerned about getting the right people in the appropriate positions, and then he or she just lets those individuals thrive using their gifts.

No matter how “great” you contend that your leader is, he or she is not a truly great leader if the person is a micro-manager.  An authentically great leader makes everyone around him or her better—not make everyone around him or her miserable and/or timid.

Keep these aforementioned thoughts in mind the next time you begin to contemplate who is a great leader.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Donate to an Effective Ministry: Paradise Church of God in Christ

Paradise Church of God in Christ

(Photo Credit: Paradise Church of God in Christ)

Grace to you in the name of our Lord and Savior:

I am a member of Paradise Church of God in Christ at 4234 Hendrix Drive, Forest Park, Georgia 30297.  To begin, I would like to invite you to join us for worship. Our Pastor, Bishop Paul L. Fortson, is a wonderfully-inspired man of God who loves the Lord and loves His people.  It would be a pleasure to have you attend one of our anointed services in the near future.

Also, I would like to take this opportunity to ask for your support as our church tackles a monumental task.  In 2002, Bishop Fortson was led by the Lord to build a gymnasium and cultural center for the members of Paradise and our surrounding community.  In 2003, we opened the doors to the newly-built Paradise Gymnasium & Cultural Center.  Since then, many wonderful things have transpired to not only benefit our members, but also our local community, the city of Forest Park, and neighboring cities throughout Clayton County.

With a goal to help community residents make positive changes in their lives and build stronger families, Paradise has assisted men, women and youth through mentoring programs, sports tournaments, career and education coaching, and parenting and life skills development.  I am Godly-proud to share that several of the young men and women we have worked with have gone on to college or trade school and are now productive citizens in their respective communities.  Additionally, in 2012, we served the international community by partnering with Forest Park’s City Government as the host site for over 100 volunteers who collectively packaged more than 20,000 meals for the people of Haiti.

Given our Center’s impact, our desire is not only to continue serving in this capacity, but also to do more!  Today, our church is facing a financial challenge, however.  God has given a vision through our Pastor called Sponsor a Saint.  I am asking you to Sponsor a Saint by sowing a seed of $100, $50, or $25.  By sowing a seed, once or becoming a ministry partner, you will enable us to liquidate our mortgage (one million dollars) for the Paradise Gymnasium & Cultural Center.  By liquidating the mortgage, it will allow us to expand our community service and do more.  I believe God placed our church here to help people.  Moreover, I believe God is going to bless you for whatever amount He leads you to give.  We have selected the following theme for this year: “We are called to minister and witness to a deeply distressed and troubled world” (Acts 20:15-18).

With your help and God on our side, we are going to make it!  We would be pleased and honored if you would take a moment and sow a seed today.  You can mail your seed offering to the address above, or please go to our website at www.paradise/cogic.org and make your donation.  All donations are tax deductible.

Be blessed in Jesus name,

Antonio Maurice Daniels

Director of Christian Education

Chairman of Education Special Interest Group

Paradise Church of God in Christ

Reverend Markel Hutchins: Linking Activism and Ministry

Markel Hutchins

(Photo Credit: WSB TV)

A champion for racial, social and economic justice and product of Morehouse College, Reverend Markel Hutchins serves as a shining progressive example of how postmodern Black preachers should be passionately active in their communities.  Hutchins has not been derelict in his duty to engage in civil and human rights efforts, efforts like those Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X championed. Even when he was in high school, one could see a burgeoning fighter for justice in the making: He led a march against the proliferation of drugs in the neighborhood surrounding his school.  Mr. Hutchins went on to become an ordained Baptist minister, leading Markel Hutchins Ministries.  Although there are laws prohibiting clergymen from being politically engaged in the confines of places of worship, this does not mean they cannot be involved in issues pertaining to social and economic policy affecting their communities, especially outside of their places of worship.  Hutchins certainly understands this.

Reverend Hutchins has an acute awareness of the power and significance of Black preachers’ serious involvement in political, social and economic issues during the Civil Rights Movement.  Black preachers during that period understood how to minister to the comprehensive needs of their congregants.  Yes, it’s one thing to feed one’s members spiritual food; another to feed their social, economic, professional and personal development.  Mr. Hutchins has been highly attentive to the complete needs of those he leads.  By doing this, he helps to further the work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Although his leadership and ministry emerged in Atlanta, Georgia, a pivotal site during the Civil Rights Movement, his visionary leadership calls him to fight for justice throughout America.

When Black preachers invest in the communities in which they are situated, those communities become better places to live, work and play.  Unfortunately, too many Black preachers are too concerned about their personal and church’s financial prosperity to involve themselves in essential community development. Numerous pusillanimous Black preachers hide behind their collars and robes instead of tackling challenging and critical issues in their communities, including homelessness, police brutality, unfair labor practices, criminal justice system abuses, and racism, as Reverend Hutchins has done and continues to do.

Ministries not advocating for their communities are purposeless.

Markel Hutchins Ministries has purpose, vision and results.

While we increasingly see, hear and read accounts of preachers involved in corruption, and it’s easy not to support any preacher—which is a product of a burgeoning nihilistic impulse in postmodernism—it’s important to pay tribute to those preachers who are making a remarkable difference in the lives of people and their communities.  This is why we have to give Reverend Markel Hutchins his flowers while he’s living.  Although you may not always agree with his methods and viewpoints, it’s clear this man loves his country deeply enough to hold it accountable to fulfilling its nonpareil ideals—expressed most vividly and eloquently in the Declaration of Independence and Constitution.  We should demand an America as good as it’s promised, and Hutchins is tireless warrior working to see those utopian founding ideals materialize.

When an individual thinks critically and comprehensively about the work Reverend Markel Hutchins has done and is doing, it becomes transparent why former Atlanta Mayor, Shirley Franklin, the first female mayor of Atlanta and first Black woman of a prominent Southern city, posits that he “will soon be celebrated as one of our nation’s most visible and viable public servants.”

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Be Honest with Potential Employers to Manage Skeletons in Your Closet

Business Hand Shakes

(Photo Credit: Buzzle)

These days there’s too much competition for jobs to leave anything to chance.  You must make every effort to present yourself as responsible, professional and capable.  A background blemish like a poor driving record could force a potential employer to disregard your application, or to select another candidate, especially for a position that requires you to spend time behind the wheel of a vehicle.

Remember your driving lessons?  Or maybe you don’t, which is part of the problem.  Well, those instructions about defensive driving and avoiding moving violations were taught for a reason.  Those classes are intended to keep you and other motorists safe.

If you’re working a job with company safe-driving policies, any hint of irresponsible driving could make you an outsider.  Fortunately, there are ways to avoid this:

Understand your background check

Many companies will search criminal records and civil traffic records as part of a routine investigation before they hire you.  Criminal charges for reckless or impaired driving will obviously raise questions. Jobs that stress safe driving could raise issues with a history of multiple violations in a short period of time, however.

The Society for Human Resource Management notes many companies have a standard for “unacceptable” driving histories, which tends to include a suspended or revoked license, or “three or more moving violations in the past 36 months.”

You can get ahead of that by searching public records laws in the states where you live to gain a sense of the information available to employers and the general public.  You can also check with your local Department of Labor to see what information a potential employer can search.  These steps won’t erase a criminal charge or civil citation, but at least you’ll be prepared.

Some employers simply want to see if you’re honest.  U.S. News careers editor Jada A. Graves cites a 2013 study that showed 52% of employers said “they’d be more inclined to hire a candidate who disclosed a conviction before a background check revealed one.”

Learn the rules of the road

Scofflaws and routine traffic offenders do not inspire confidence in potential employers—not when they have a stack of applications from people with clean records.

Perhaps it’s time to do a little due diligence and let your next boss know you care.  Making mistakes in your youth is especially common.  In the U.S., where motor vehicle crashes is a leading cause of death among teens, plenty of entry level workers have repeat traffic violations on their records.  Sites like Driving-Tests.org provide free and interactive tests to understand traffic safety standards in greater depth to prepare drivers for DMV tests.

If you’re seeking a new job, try to view yourself through the eyes of your potential employer.  Show potential employers you have a grasp of your past and what you aim to do to be a more responsible person in the future.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Happy 34th Birthday to Santresa L. Glass

Santresa L. Glass

(Photo Credit: Santresa L. Glass)

For over 13 years, Santresa Glass has gotten on my nerves and continues to get on my nerves. Although I have had to endure her getting on my nerves for such a long time, she’s unquestionably my best friend.  San, as she’s affectionately known, is a beautiful person, inside and out.  One of the central reasons why I cherish our friendship is she’s never looking to simply use me to obtain something she wants or needs; she loves me just for who I am.  We share a metaphysical relationship and love.  Our love for one another is so deep that many people think we are intimately involved—she can only dream that this will happen one day. Our relationship is akin to the relationship Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King share.  I will always treasure our relationship.

When a problem arises in my life, she does not contribute it; she’s there to support me through the problem.  We always know that we can count on each other.

If more people could experience a relationship like the one we have, the world would be a better place.

San, I’m super proud of all of your accomplishments.  You know that I’ve witnessed the highs and lows life has presented you.  The lows have been pretty low and the highs have been pretty high. Through it all, you’ve made it.  You have blossomed into a remarkable woman.  In a few weeks, you will earn your doctoral degree in Organizational Leadership—what an awesome accomplishment!  (On the official day you complete all requirements for your doctoral degree, I will pen a piece focused solely on this accomplishment.)

Although I’ve always cherished our friendship, it was not until 2009 that I truly understood just how valuable of a best friend she is.  We never become too old to learn.  Life has taught me that there are special elements about the friendship that are absent in my other friendships.  What’s odd about our chemistry is we disagree 99% of the time.  I am right 100% of the time, however.

It’s such a great feeling to know that our friendship is not dependent on what I can do for her, and it’s wonderful to know that what I can do for her does not define our friendship.

Our relationship is envied by so many that we’re responsible for a number of people just popping up with “best friends” all of a sudden and/or falsely characterizing their relationships with others as “best friends” when they know full well this characterization is dishonest.

Today, in my own unique way, I want to wish Santresa L. Glass a Happy 34th Birthday!  Enjoy your day and your day off.

Love you,

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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The 4 Best Time & Money Savers for Busy College Students

Black Students and Care Packages

(Photo Credit: NWI Times)

Managing classes, exams and special projects makes it difficult to find any “me” time, and according to a recent survey conducted by Citi Group and Seventeen Magazine, almost four out of five college students work while attending school, making personal time just about impossible.  Save time and money by taking advantage of the following four resources—you don’t have to go off-campus for these services, and they’ll help you get it all done with some down time to spare.

Wellness Around the Clock

Studying for finals might seem more important than tending to a cold, but sometimes you need to receive input from a medical professional.  If you get sick but aren’t sure if you should take time off from classes to see a doctor, schedule a consultation with an online healthcare provider at MeMD. You’ll get high-quality, affordable healthcare from a board-certified doctor right from your mobile device.

A Workout You Can Do Anywhere (and It’s Free)

College involves a significant amount of time sitting: you sit through lectures, sit to study and sit to type papers.  If you don’t have the funds to join a gym or the time to spend working out at one, download the free Tabata Timer app.  In Tabata training, you do 20 seconds of high-intensity exercise followed by a 10-second break for four-minute increments.  The routine, commonly referred to as high-intensity interval training, offers optimal results when performed three to four times throughout the day or over the course of 20 minutes, according to the American Council on Exercise.  You can easily set the timer from anywhere, bust out the moves and be back to studying in less than 10 minutes.

Join a CSA

If money is tight, you probably already do your own grocery shopping instead of eating out.  Join a Community-supported Agriculture (CSA) to save even more on food.  In this system, consumers buy seasonal, locally grown fruits, vegetables, herbs and often meat and fish directly from a farmer.  Boxes are delivered on a bi-weekly basis, and many CSAs deliver right to college campuses.  Not only does this type of service support a well-rounded diet with just-picked produce, it conserves time and money; no driving to the store every week.  Split a box with your roommates or neighbors to save even more.

Tell Your Family What You Need

If your grandmother and aunt send you random assortments of cakes and knitted sweaters, tell them what you really need the next time they ask.  Supplies such as reusable water bottles, lotion, shampoo, snacks and other personal care items add up.  A subscription care-package service such as PijonBox is a cool way for your family to help you get the supplies you need sent right to your door every month.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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