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Question about STRIDE and general money stuff

spiritinthenightspiritinthenight Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
edited August 2011 in Smith College
Hi! So about the STRIDE stipend - I was wondering in what form we get paid and how often. I was also wondering around how much spending money per week students generally need. I'm sure it varies and everything but just a general estimate would be nice. I'm starting to think about how much of my STRIDE money I can put away and how much I'll be spending.
Post edited by spiritinthenight on

Replies to: Question about STRIDE and general money stuff

  • mcb150mcb150 Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    Well, it depends, coffee for example is ~$2. So if you get coffee about 3 times a week, maybe a more fancy coffee once a week (around $4), so maybe $6-10? More or less depending your personal habits. And say you stop at the CC Cafe twice a week for a snack/meal. Thats about $8-10 a week for that. You get campus cash you can use in the cafe, but thats only $25 a year, which runs out quickly. I'd still say you don't need to count quite that much money towards the cafe for your first semester (especially if you are trying to not spend too much) since you do have the campus cash, and its also less tempting to eat there while the dining hall food is still new enough that you are't sick of it. I barely used the cafe first semester, second semester I went overboard and spent around $20 a week there, and then calmed down again, so it really depends on you.

    You will probably also go out for food at least once a week, and going out can be around $7 if you get something cheap to around $20 (you can obviously go more expensive, but thats a decent average). And don't forget getting presents and things for friends, maybe around $5-10 per person, up to $20 or even 30 if you find something absolutely perfect or its for a very good friend. Again, you spend more on that your first year, learning quickly that you're a college student and can't afford fancy presents for everyone. Add around $10-15 a week for random expenses. Do you plan on drinking? If you're lucky you'll have upperclassmen that make it so you never have to pay for your own booze your first year, but once you're buying your own, depending how much you're drinking it could be anywhere from $5-20 a week, as an average.

    Again, once you figure out where to spend and if you're trying to save money, you can spend less than this, and if you don't need to save quite as much, you could be spending much more, but I think this would be about an average amount a week. Current Smithies, let me know if I'm wrong -I may have forgotten how much exactly I spent or how expensive things are now.
  • mcb150mcb150 Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    Oh, to the first part of your question -when I was at Smith, we'd get paid every two weeks either with a check or directly into your bank account depending what we chose.
  • spiritinthenightspiritinthenight Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
    Thanks so much! That's all really helpful.
  • SmithieandProudSmithieandProud Registered User Posts: 3,038 Senior Member
    Keep in mind too that your first month or so is likely to be your most expensive, particularly first year. Classes tend to be a little less demanding the first few weeks of the semester, until people sort out their schedules, so as a consequence you'll have more time to socialize. And since you're new to Northampton, you'll probably want to explore coffee shops and restaurants.

    You'll also probably end up thinking of a million things you need or at least want for your dorm room. If you're not able to drive to campus, you'll be spending much more than the other students buying real necessities that you couldn't fly out, and even if you do drive, you'll find there's things that get forgotten. Also, your books first-year are much more likely to be proper textbooks (as opposed to say, paperback primary sources) for most of your classes, so that's an added expense. In subsequent years, you'll have more time to shop around for books before classes start. You'll also be able to pack and store things in your house over the summer, so you won't need to buy as much right when you get there. But the first month of the first year can be really expensive.

    After the first month though, expenses even out a lot. So give it a couple of months to give yourself time to figure out the best spend/save mix. One expense Mcb didn't mention that will be a constant is laundry. When I was there, laundry cost $1.40 to wash and $1.40 to dry per load if you used your OneCard to pay. If you used quarters it was $1.50 each. I usually did 3 loads of laundry per week, including sheets and towels, so I spent around $8.50 every week on wash.

    That was my main constant expense. We didn't eat dinner out in town very much, maybe a couple times a month, but we often went to Herrell's for ice cream (around $3 or 4, if I remember right...) and we would sometimes study in coffee shops in town, which meant at least ordering coffee at similar to Starbucks prices and probably also ordering lunch ($10 or less for the food) if we were at Haymarket. After long nights of partying, ordering Domino's was a common thing for my friends (the only place to order food late night in Noho was Domino's.)

    Also house dues. For most houses, the dues are pretty low, but it's set differently by each house each year. I think mine were $20 per semester and that covered house purchases, party planning, senior banquet, winter and spring weekends, etc.
  • phanaticphanatic Registered User Posts: 849 Member
    Actually, mcb, last year, Smith wouldn't let me take my STRIDE stipend in any form except direct deposit, so if you're hoping to get it as a check, you may be disappointed. That may have changed, though.
  • spiritinthenightspiritinthenight Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
    3 loads of laundry per week?
  • SmithieandProudSmithieandProud Registered User Posts: 3,038 Senior Member
    Well, it's not that surprising. One load of colors, one load of whites, one load of jeans or towels or sheets (heavy stuff). The washers hold a good amount, but not a ton (unless you don't want any of your laundry to dry). I usually did it all in one night. If you don't care about sorting your clothes (i.e. you don't mind if all your white clothes turn red/purple/pink, and your jeans don't dry and your sheets get wet socks caught in them) you can do less. Also if you do laundry more frequently, you don't have to do three loads at once. But three loads is pretty average.
  • McPucks1357McPucks1357 Registered User Posts: 388 Member
    I did a load of laundry about once every 1.5 weeks. The washers are decent sized and the dryers are giant and can dry anything. If you take your clothes straight out after the cycle is over they are burning hot.
  • SmithieandProudSmithieandProud Registered User Posts: 3,038 Senior Member
    I guess I should clarify that by "load" I mean one laundry basket full of clothes divided into three smaller piles, sorted by type of laundry. So I guess you could call that one load of laundry.
  • McPucks1357McPucks1357 Registered User Posts: 388 Member
    Yeah, I don't divide clothes. I'm pretty low maintenance, and one of my philosophies on clothes is that if I can't wash it with all my other clothes, I shouldn't own it.
  • SmithieandProudSmithieandProud Registered User Posts: 3,038 Senior Member
    Well, to each their own. I prefer to sort mine, I find that they get cleaner and stay nicer longer. Plus my mom drummed the sorting into me, and it's good practice for future adulthood.
  • McPucks1357McPucks1357 Registered User Posts: 388 Member
    One strategy with the smith washers and dryers is if you are doing more than one load at a time, try to wash at the same time in different machines and then dry them together since the dryers are much bigger than the washers. It saves a $1.35, and the dryers are often more sought after during times of multiple people doing laundry since the dry cycle is 22 minutes longer than the wash cycle.
  • spiritinthenightspiritinthenight Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
    Thank you, that's a really good idea!
  • brie99brie99 Registered User Posts: 87 Junior Member
    This post appears to illustrate Smithies' investigative approach to everything, including even laundry!

    Here we have two well researched alternate theories across multiple years regarding how to maximize laundry utilization including the defining "22-minute Differential Principle" between washer and dryer time. You folks are truly amazing!

    I believe "Optimizing Resources within Smith Laundering Facilities" is to be an ongoing STRIDE project directed by the Econ department. Applications to Investment Banking and money laundering are yet to be confirmed.....but I trust Smithies will ensure ethics will be included. And I trust gender differentials of laundry usage will be explored in a separate project.....
  • Bossf51Bossf51 Registered User Posts: 2,608 Senior Member
    Haha another thread which shows why Smith leads the "league" in postings. :D

    BTW back in the "dark ages" when I was in college I think I did my laundry three times a semester(not including the stuff I brought home on breaks). :eek:
This discussion has been closed.