Students create a guide to 'Being Not-Rich' at university
There are ways to save at university, these students will show you how. Source: Shutterstock

Studying in the US can be hella expensive. From pricey groceries, expensive textbooks and the value of the greenback against most other currencies, sometimes you just need advice on ‘Being Not-Rich’ at university.

Students at the University of Michigan have created their own guide to ‘Being Not-Rich at UM.’

This comes after the student government offered top money saving tips such as canceling your maid service and not buying the newest clothes in their affordability guide earlier this year, reported Inside Higher Ed.

The ‘Being Not-Rich’ guide helps all lower-to-middle class students find the best money hacks, as well as study and social guides that acknowledge the struggles of lower-income students.

From where to find cheaper bread, to the advantages of working in food services for free meals, and even where to get the best drink deals around campus, the guide is a low-income student’s best friend.

“Why can’t you land that prestigious internship? Why didn’t you spend your adolescence being classically trained in piano?

“Why does everyone seem so much more impressive than you? This guide is for anyone who has ever felt marginalized on campus,” Lauren Schandevel, a junior and creator of the guide wrote in the introduction.

Schandevel’s guide started off modestly before growing to a 70-page long document with 24 contributors, covering everything from textbooks, clothing, housing, mentorship, study abroad programs and student social dynamics.

Some international students fit the stereotype of rich kids who are financially supported by their parents. For other international students, even affording three nutritional meals a day is a struggle.

Financial advice written by the student government – who are supposed to represent you on campus – which suggest canceling your maid service is bound to make you feel invisible if you’re struggling to meet even your basic needs.

Lots of international students are stretched for money. Source: Shutterstock

Kevin Kruger president of NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education said he was particularly impressed with the guide because it overcame the jargon that universities often use when speaking about low-income students, according to Inside Higher Ed.

“One of the challenges of higher ed is that we sometimes make this a little unintelligible,” but the guide helps individual students instead of treating low-income students as a large collective, Kruger said.

Schandevel’s guide has gained attention across the country and hopes to make it a polished Google document by the end of summer so that more students can benefit from it.

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