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15 UNM Hacks That Will Make Your College Life Easier

By ATBailey 08/12/2014

Albuquerque News

As the University of New Mexico’s new semester is about to start up again, there are ways to make it easier. Here’s a list of hacks that every UNM student should know:

Live in the residence halls

Besides saving you from the hassle of having to commute to campus, living in the residence halls can also help you save on the cost of printing. Every semester your Lobo ID is loaded with $10 for printing, but it’s easy to blow through that quickly when you are printing off slides, readings and papers for multiple classes. You can make that $10 last a little bit longer by living in the residence halls because you are able to print for free in the computer pod in the Student Residence Center.

Be a Resident Advisor

Becoming a resident advisor can provide you with a simple way of working and going to school simultaneously. The job works around your class schedule, provides you a free room, a meal plan and a monthly stipend.


There’s no way to get out of having to go to advisement every semester, but you can make it an easier experience. It’s best to go to your advisor after the first few weeks of the semester and before the last few weeks of the semester. Going during the middle helps you miss the time when a lot of students are going to advisement to drop and switch classes and before the rush of students going to advisement at the last minute to get holds off their accounts.

Class registration

Registering for the classes for the next semester can be frustrating, especially if a class you need isn’t offered often and/or has a small class size. Registering at midnight when your registration day begins is one way to better your chances of getting into a class. Writing down the classes’ Reference Numbers (CRN) beforehand and entering on the main registration page right at midnight can help even more. Also being a part of UNM’s Honors College lets you register earlier than everybody else. 

If you weren't fortunate enough to get into the class you needed to, waiting until the student enrollment drop date before the semester starts gives you another chance. Students often forget to pay their accounts on time and when they forget to do so, classes drop them. This gives you the chance to get into the class or get off the wait list. 

Online classes

UNM’s online classes allow you to take classes that fulfill core or degree requirements without having to physically attend a class. The class is more flexible and will give you a set amount of time to submit an assignment or to take a test.

Buying books

One of the most expensive things about taking classes are the books you need. The smart thing to do is to wait until you attend your classes first before buying the books. This way you can make sure you’re going to stay in the class and some teachers will let you know that you won’t need the book or if you can use an older edition that is cheaper. Also buying books online or checking to see if the library has a copy can help save some money.

Lobo ID

Your Lobo ID isn’t only useful for school, it also can be used to get discounts and free things. J. Crew and Banana Republic offer discounts with a student ID and you can get a free iced tea at McCallister’s Deli. Even after you have left UNM, you can still use your ID for things until it expires.

I voted sticker

When ASUNM elections roll around every semester, it’s a task to avoid candidates trying to stop you and get you to listen to why you should vote for them. The best way to put an end to this is to wear the “I voted” sticker they hand out after voting. Once they see this, they’ll realize they have no reason to stop you. Also save the sticker and reuse it for any future elections if you don’t want to vote again.

Game Day Friday

If you’re wanting to buy some lobo wear from the bookstore, you should wait until Friday to do it. On Fridays the bookstore has a Game Day Friday special and will give you 25 percent off lobowear.

Parking permit

If you have a UNM parking permit, you can park in any of the other parking lots around campus after 3:45 p.m., except for reserved spots, R lot and the structures. You can also park in any lot on campus during the weekend.

Bus pass

Students can take the city bus for free. The university gives out free bus pass stickers to students who are enrolled in at least 3 credit hours. Students can pick up stickers in the Student Union Building or at the Parking and Transportation Services office.

Free movie tickets

The Campus Office of Substance Abuse Prevention (COSAP) offers students free movie tickets for being designated drivers. Students just need to sign up and take a picture as a designated driver wearing a red wristband they will receive from the program. They then can turn the picture into the COSAP office and receive a free movie ticket.

Study abroad

The study abroad gives students the chance to study in another country and still earn credit for UNM. Students can usually use any financial aid they receive attending UNM towards their study abroad program too.

Free food

There are plenty of ways to score free food at UNM. The first week of every semester has welcome back days that will have different free food every day. The Student Union Building will also have activities throughout the semester with free food. 

RAs tend to put on programs that have free food and you can always get a friend in the residence halls to use a guest swipe and get you a free meal at the La Posada Dining Hall.

PE courses

Taking a physical education course is a great way to try a new sport and get credit for your major’s requirements. It depends on your major, but most allow for a few physical education hours to count towards your degree.