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Given my recent absence from the University of Sydney Blog-o-sphere, you would be forgiven for thinking I had fallen down the same hole as the global economy. Thankfully, old blogging habits Die Hard, and like Bruce Willis in 1995, I’m Back With a Vengeance. However, like Bruce Willis in Die Hard 4, I haven’t done this in a while, and this will most likely be a bomb.

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As a fledgling uni student, you quickly become accustomed to the plethora of costs and expenditures associated with this new phase in your life. Also, one is often faced with the situation where one’s parents, in all their infinite wisdom, have decided that it is time for you to extend your horizons, challenge yourself, and start paying for all your own stuff! Greaaaat, we say.

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As a musician (or, to be more specific, as a young and relatively-cheaper-to-hire musician), chances are you’ll be asked to do at least five million gigs before you hit 25. NEVER underestimate the power of a gig. A ‘bad’ gig can damage more than just your morale. In order to preserve your friendships, sanity, petrol, and bank balance, I suggest thou readest on.

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I had this grand illusion that once I started full time work, I would have so much money I wouldn’t know what to do with it. If I could survive quite easily on the measly uni student budget, then surely the notes would be flowing fast and furiously. Let me assure you, with my bank account as my witness, no such problem exists.

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A lot of people ask how much it is possible to work without sacrificing your studies. The quick answer to this question is “no more than 10-20 hours a week”. It’s much easier to find a job if you have one or more week days off. A lot of my arts and commerce friends have at least one day off (I know someone with 3 days off.. I mean when it gets to the point where my weekends have become equivalent to his days at uni... it’s just ridiculous).

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I was driving home from work the other week, cruising down the Great Western Highway debating what I should cook for dinner when something on the radio made me gasp and forget all about my dinner dilemma. (It was either packet made macaroni cheese or a stir fry with slightly rotting vegies. The stir fry won.) You see, some poor uni student confessed that he hadn’t eaten in 5 days.

This malnourished student was not on a hunger strike. Nor did he suffer from anorexia nervosa. The reason for starving for 5 days was simply because he had no money to buy food, and his pride was obviously bigger than his stomach.

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Today I had a job interview, and they asked me to do the weirdest thing for it.

“Prepare a three minute speech on one of the following topics:
i) Why yellow is the greatest colour ever
ii) Why crayons are better than pencils
iii) Why everyone should grow a beard”

Here’s what I came up with...

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Today I felt like I’d won the lottery. Only I didn’t spend money buying a ticket and my odds were a lot greater!

You see, I opened my mail today to find a wonderous cheque from Sydney University -my scholarship cheque.

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Everything you ever wanted to know about uni but were too afraid to ask....
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