I'm a first year graduate student in the US, and I'm considering several options to start building credit history.
1) Apply for a local credit union secured credit card (without annual fee)
2) Apply for a Discover secured credit card
3) Apply for (non-secured) Discover it Student Card
4) Any combination of the above
I'm hesitant about the third option since I have no credit history. On the other hand, a fellow graduate student of mine applied for one and got one (but he had a promo code from someone who has a good credit history). If that matters, I work as a TA and get about $17,000 per year, $700 of which (per month) are spent for rent.
What is the best way to start credit history in your opinion? Which of the ways above seem the most reasonable? Is it a bad idea to use e.g. 1) followed by 3) or 2)? If it is not, after what period of time should I do that?