Better discounts needed for college students

by: MARCELLA IVINS/Editorial Assistant

College students are working minimum wage and paying bills at the same time.

There are discounts at a few retail stores, restaurants, and other places college students may go.  While these offers help students cut corners, I believe student discounts would be more helpful if it were put toward bills instead.

Student housing is around $500, which is almost as much as a low-income family living on the east side of Lubbock pays for their housing.  What about healthcare?  No help available for college students? OK, that’s definitely not fair.

I’m a college student living with five roommates so I can have cheap rent.  The only good part about my situation is that I know all these people from high school, and three are never there, so it’s just me and my other roommate most of the time.  I know other students have to find different ways to have cheap rent, or they are giving in and paying higher prices.  I understand that there are a lot of college students out there who would love to have discounted rent. I get that. But if there are exceptions and rules just like with everything else, there has to be a way to help out college students.

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I believe that if you told a student to maintain a certain GPA in order to have reduced rent or a discount on their car payment, however much it may be, it would take stress off their mind and motivate them to do better in school.  I know taking off just $50 of my rent or car payment would help me out with another bill that I could put $50 towards.  BOOM.  Two bills are now taken care of.  That means I can put money towards food instead.

With certain scholarships, you have to maintain a certain GPA in order to keep that scholarship.  They should do the same with rent or any other “adult” bill you may have.  If there were offers like these out there, I would try my hardest to have cheap rent and a decent place to live.

Not only would I like a decent place to live, I would also like to go to the doctor every few months to make sure I’m healthy.  My situation isn’t the same as others.  My dad is disabled and retired, so he has his own healthcare and own health issues to deal with.  That means that I need to do this by myself, which I am OK with.

The only problem is I’m paying for my car, car insurance, rent, electric/water, phone bill, gas for my car, loans, all by myself.  That leaves no room to pay for health insurance.  I’m sure I am not the only student with all these bills.  So when health insurance is asking for $50 each month, I’m thinking about food.  I am definitely not thinking about Ramen noodles.  Considering I work at a restaurant, smelling real food is kind of hard to not eat when it’s in front of you.  The only problem is that food is expensive.  Although I do go to cheap fast food places, it all adds up because I never have time to cook between work and school.  I promise I want to eat healthy, and I will one day.  But it takes too much time, and it’s too expensive.

As for now, I don’t have my life together, but that’s OK.  I am grateful for learning about struggle and learning to find different ways to save my money.  It reminds me that minimum wage isn’t where I want to be, but a discount on rent and other bills would be really helpful!

Author: Plainsman Press Staff

The student newspaper of South Plains College.

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