Money, Career and Planning for the Future

Studying at university is a significant investment in your social and financial future. How do other students manage the day-to-day expenses of study, life and work? What can you do before you graduate to improve your career options?

Finding Help and Support

  • Work out money saving strategies. Consider buying no-name brands and checking weekly specials to reduce the cost of your groceries.

  • Get help before a problem gets big. Let people know if you are having trouble making payments and get help to sort it out.
  • Find a casual job. Not only will this help you make ends meet, but it’s also a good way to meet people and balance your program load. Check out Career Hub for Jobs on Campus for jobs advertised through the University Careers service.

  • Use your phone to remind you when library books are due. Library fines accumulate at a scary rate and if you don’t pay them you won’t have access to your marks or even be allowed to graduate.

  • Apply for a scholarship, even if you don’t think you’d qualify. It can make a huge difference in terms of being able to buy all the required textbooks and other equipment. Ask a Student Welfare Officer to help you with the scholarship application if you’re unsure how to do it.

  • Textbooks can be really expensive. If you can’t afford to get them all, most will be available on loan from the library. Remember to check in the Reserve collection in the Library and don’t forget to use the online reading lists created by the University Library – you can usually find these in your vUWS site under ‘Readings and Resources’. Think about buying your textbooks second hand, check the notice boards on campus for students selling their books.

  • I know it sounds boring but organise a budget to use throughout your studies. It may be helpful to sit down with a family member or friend and get their advice. Make sure you include the cost of textbooks, travel, equipment, parking, food and socialising.

  • Look for ‘freebies’ and events. Go to events, exhibitions and observatory open nights held at the Uni. They are a great opportunity to see what’s happening around the University and to go out with friends.

Western Sydney U Tips

Food for Thought - Planning Pays Off

Studying at university is an investment in your future. Like any investment it works better if you take the time to understand and adapt according to your individual circumstances and financial situation.

The University has a number of services and resources to help you to do this. A great place to start is with the Student Welfare Service and Careers. Don’t wait to be asked, apply for a scholarship.

There’s more to your future than your degree

Learn how to write the perfect application, redhot resumes and hone those interview skills to help you land the job you want with the Western Careers team.

Speak to your Academic Program Advisor

Your Academic Program Advisor can give you advice about the flexible study options available to you and how they’ll effect your time at uni. You can find our Academic Program Advisor on your program page in the Handbook.

Plan for the Future

  • It’s never too early to look for volunteering or work experience opportunities to expand your skills.

  • Start developing a resume and portfolio of your skills and accomplishments. These can include articles about you, awards that you have won, activities in which you have participated and volunteer, as well as paid work. This is also helpful in applying for scholarships or volunteer and work opportunities.

  • Value your professional practice as an undergraduate and think about how to market the many skills you are developing as you study.

  • Research future career paths and take a skills/interests inventory to discover which careers you may be interested in. This can help you plan what sort of subjects you could take within your degree. Check out the careers website for events and information.

Flexible Study Options

  • Try different study modes. There’s more than one way to get your degree. Talk to your lecturer or Academic Program Advisor to discuss any alternative pathways you might want to take.

  • Think about spreading your study load; part time or Summer Session options could give you the time to enjoy what you are learning instead of just stressing about how much work there is to get through.

  • Include your family and friends in your decisions. People tend to be more supportive if they feel like they still matter.