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Managing Your Time

You will be busy in college. Really busy. Besides your all-important classes and friends, there are clubs, sports, parties—and sleep. Here are some tips to help you get your priorities straight.

There is so much to do in college—and in high school while getting ready for college—it's difficult to find time for it all. You have three term papers, two midterms, a party, and a can't-miss date on Friday night to squeeze into one short week. How can you fit them all in? With proper time management. Start practicing the following tips in high school so that you'll be a pro by the time you get to college.

Where Do You Have to Be at 2 p.m.?

Once you've determined the things you really need to do, enter them into a daily schedule. You may want to purchase a day planner, portable calendar, datebook, or electronic organizer. Use them to immediately note assignments and test dates. Having a calendar also allows you to cross tasks off when you complete them.

Schedule your study time. Don't just assume it will take care of itself. Try to write down what you do every hour in a given week. Be absolutely honest about how you spend your time. Even if you spend three hours watching TV, write it down. Then determine which of those activities you really don't need to continue. Sort out the productive activities from those that simply fill time. Start with the little tasks. Even if you save 15 minutes a day, that's almost two hours a week.

Don't Forget the Priorities

If you need eight hours of sleep a night, take it. Getting sufficient sleep will help you stay healthy. If you know you HAVE to study at seven or eight every evening, you'll get used to doing it then and will get more done. Don't let anything interfere with that study time. Plan your other activities around it. Stay ahead of your reading assignments (especially in college) and other homework and try to go to all of your classes. It's very hard to catch up once you miss a class. You can also use your day planner to enter homework deadlines and to prioritize your tasks.

All the planning in the world cannot squeeze extra hours into your day, so don't over-schedule your classes or free time. And don't forget to schedule your personal time. Everyone needs time out. Reportedly, even Microsoft founder Bill Gates schedules time off every year to catch up on all the books he wants to read. If you feel like rewarding yourself for studying hard or doing well on a test, set aside that time beforehand—and follow through with your plans.

For Students Age 18 and Older

Have you received a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit card?

Learn how to qualify for a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit Card


1st Financial Bank believes students who pick colleges wisely will also want to learn how to use credit cards wisely.

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COLLEGEdata Dollars are
points you earn by
completing certain
COLLEGEdata activities

Ways to earn
COLLEGEdata Dollars:

  • Complete your Admissions Profile.
  • Add colleges to your College Choices.
  • Update your Admissions Statuses.
  • Use the College Match tool.

What are COLLEGEdata Dollars (CD$)?

COLLEGEdata Dollars (CD$) are points you earn by completing certain COLLEGEdata activities. The maximum number of CD$ you can redeem is 5000. Once you have earned at least 2500 CD$, you can redeem them for $25, which will be provided to you on a Loyalty Card, and once you earn another 2500 CD$, you can redeem those CD$ for a second $25, which will also be provided to you on a Loyalty Card.

Earn points and redeem them for
U.S. Dollars

Complete certain COLLEGEdata activities (for example, signing up, starting your Admissions Profile, searching for colleges, calculating your chances for admission, searching for scholarships, updating your Profile with your admission decisions). Each activity is worth a specific amount of points (CD$). You can redeem the points you earn for U.S. Dollars that will be issued to you in the form of a 1st Financial Bank USA Loyalty Mastercard®.

How do I earn COLLEGEdata Dollars?

You can earn CD$ by completing certain COLLEGEdata activities. As soon as you sign up and activate your COLLEGEdata account, explore COLLEGEdata and begin completing COLLEGEdata activities to earn points.

Here is a full list of COLLEGEdata activities for which you may earn CD$ and the number of CD$ you can earn by completing each activity.*

Activity
CD$
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+ CD$
You just earned COLLEGEdata Dollars!
Check your CD$ Dashboard at the bottom of the page to view your CD$ balance, find other activities that you can complete to earn CD$, and redeem the CD$ you have earned for U.S. Dollars.