Guide to Graduating on the Cheap: Prelude

It's down to the home stretch! I finally realized how close I am to the finish line when I got my Bar/bri and PMBR books. For those of you who aren not familiar with what those are, they're the bar review courses that just cleaned out my bank account. It's too late for graduating 3L's, but here's a bit of opinion for future reference: I've heard from numerous people that the PMBR 6-day course is useless, and since it's the week right after finals are done all the way up to graduation day, I decided to skip it. That decision saved me a couple hundred dollars, which makes me happy. I might have mentioned it before, but in case I didn't, join the ABA before you sign up for PMBR. The $20 membership can save you around a hundred bucks (if you're doing the 3-day and the 6-day).

Anyway, back on topic: graduation. Some people can care less about the pomp and circumstance, but their families want to make it a big deal. Personally, I like to attend my own graduation because I want to feel like there's some kind of payoff to all the work I've been doing. However, I don't a lot of fuss, and I don't want to spend a lot of money. Some people spend money on all the graduation brouhaha (Grad Night, class ring, announcements, class trip, etc.) just because they're things that you "have to do" before graduating. If you have the money, it's not much of an issue, but if you don't, don't fall for the trap. To me, most of the commemorative stuff are just schemes to make money off of you, just like the "buy this commemorative video to celebrate your favorite professional team's world championship win!" nonsense--you'll spend all that money for something you'll look at for all of 5 seconds and then promptly neglect.

There are many meaningful ways to celebrate your accomplishments or your loved ones' accomplishments. True, there are certain things worth buying, but there's a lot of junk that are not. If we plan carefully, the money we save from not buying junk can go toward, say, the party for friends and family. To cut down on costs, it's best to watch what we're buying as well as what we're doing. Some methods are more cost-effective than others. I'll parse out what I know and what might work.

Since I'll be cramming for final exams, I won't have time to write out my typically long diatribes (I can hear some of you rejoicing right now). Instead, I'll break the topic up to manageable bits over the next few weeks. I'll start with the more pressing matters that the would-be graduate should do first (as in NOW for those who are in my shoes), and then progress to things that can wait until the last minute.

My fellow graduates--it's hard to get motivated, but let's push hard and finish strong!

1 comment:

ambika said...

I never did get the class ring, varsity jacket, useless tchotchke brouhaha associated with graduating. It was bad enough having to pay an arm and a leg to buy (for high school) or rent (for college) the cap & gown. I went with the bar minimum and really don't regret it.