The Economista: Winter Break Experience

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Welcome to The Economista! My name is Andy Pham and I will be giving you weekly tips and tricks on how to budget, save money, and have inexpensive fun at Brown!

Welcome back to The Economista! I hope you didn’t miss it too much. I’ll be getting back into the swing of things now, with a new post every Monday.

Today, I’ll be talking about the dichotomy of living at Brown and going back to living at home. As a low-income student, this was something that I found especially notable.

At Brown, you can shower for as long as you want albeit, in flip flops. You can accidentally leave the lights on all night and wake up worry-free the next morning. At Brown, you also gain the power of changing temperature with unrestricted control of your room’s thermostat. Of course, most of us at Brown are all mindful of our environment but these are just things you don’t necessarily have to think about at Brown.

This can all change when you leave the hill in little ole’ PVD.

Going back home, I quickly lost this carefree attitude. It was a weird and illuminating transition of mindset. This is not necessarily the experience for every other low-income student, but it was my and some of my friends’ experience. I want to share this experience in case you are fearful of attending an institution like this – like I was before I got here.

It can be a difficult transition but I just want to let you know that you can make it through. If you get into Brown, you earned your place here – don’t let anyone tell you different. You raised up against the odds and you made it into this school. Even, if you don’t get into this school, whatever college you get into is still a huge step forward.

So, my two cents on this whole environmental discrepancy between Brown’s campus and your home is that it can be hard, but don’t let it defer you. There is so much interpersonal support on this campus, including other students that are also low-income and other students who can align with the intersectionalities of your specific identity. If you find that Brown does not provide you with a resource that you need, you can bet that there are other students just as passionate as you that would be excited to help you change this.

I hope this wasn’t too much of a change from my usual tips on saving money at Brown, but I thought this was an important experience to share. Please don’t hesitate to email me if you want to talk about this further or just have any questions!

Andy

I am open to any and all ideas, and will be happy to answer any questions you may have! If you have any suggestions, questions, or comments you can e-mail me at andy_pham@brown.edu . Thanks!

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