Editorial: Summer of change

By Brian Loschiavo
April 23, 2009

The economy is headed down a path of uncertainty and summer is right around the corner. In years past, this has been the time to plan family vacations or take road trips with friends. This summer things will change for a lot of people. How will you make the best of summer ’09 while trying to stay afloat in this unfortunate recession?

One of the most important things during this downward slope of the economy is to stick to a master plan for where you want to head. This economy is really a reminder that we’ll need to keep focused on long-term goals. It’s important to not let all the negative news about the economy shape the choices you make financially. Of course, understand that you need to adapt to the changes and, at some point, things will look up.

Summer jobs will also be affected during this time. It will be harder than usual to find simple summer jobs that you can just leave at the end of the summer. Many employers do not have the freedom of flexibility anymore. With money tight it will be harder to ask for an extended leave for vacation because they may be short staffed.

Many college students may be in store for a much-needed wake-up call when they realize the severity of the economic situation. This could be a devil in disguise considering that it will prepare many young adults for the challenges they will face in the real world.

Even though jobs are tight, college students need to stay focused on getting important career experience, whether through a co-op, internship, volunteering or, ideally, a paid position. It’s the people with the experience gained through college who will end up on top when it’s time to graduate.

Sure, it would be great to forget all about the real world for the summer, but we just don’t have that luxury anymore, if we ever had it.

Without summer jobs that most college students obtain it may be extremely hard to have the easy-living summer lifestyle that you are used to if you aren’t receiving money from parents. This will become even more challenging for college seniors on the rise to the professional world.

Considering things seem grim and this summer may not be looking too bright and sunny, at least money-wise, you must be asking, what can I do to still go on that annual vacation?

There are many things that can be done to save money and still go on a respectable vacation. Stay closer to home. Instead of spending money on skyrocketing airline tickets, go to your local shore for a week or weekend here and there. Gas prices are on the rise but you don’t have to travel too far.

Try to find a place that is off season and figure out when resorts are having big value weeks. These are usually on the fringes of summer. When you get to your vacation spot make sure there is a kitchen.

Instead of going out to dinner every night, stay in and prepare a home-cooked meal for a few nights and spend time with the family. Isn’t that why you’re vacationing in the first place?

Try to find a way to relax and make that summer vacation a reality in these difficult times. With a little creativity and compromise, you can find a way to make it happen. Just remember to stay positive.

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Brian Loschiavo

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