Skip Navigation LinksHome > Resources > Campus Life > Money Management

Money Management

Money Management

Managing your money while in college is one of the less pleasant tasks you’ll face that first year on campus, but it’s also one of the most important. Chances are this will be your first foray into responsible adulthood, and making sure your finances are in order is no longer your parents’ duty. Browse through our tips on managing your money while in college so that you don’t find yourself in trouble financially. You can cover the costs of your education while getting into the least amount of debt possible, and maybe have some fun while you’re there.

Be Budget-Conscious

The basics of money management always include knowing how to budget. If you’re someone who likes making lists, keep a spreadsheet of how much money you’ll need and what you should be spending on all of your expenses. If you want more flexibility and to account for unknown factors like late-night pizza runs or car repairs, you may need to figure out another source of income besides your financial aid package and look for part-time jobs. If you’re lucky enough to have money left over once you’ve drawn up your budget, that extra money could be your personal expenses and emergency fund. You don’t need to sit in your room to be a smart spender and a smart saver, but a detailed budget will take you a long way toward keeping you from spending beyond your means.

Decisions Now Matter Later

That credit card with the low student interest rate may seem pretty appealing at first. After all, signing up now will get you a free t-shirt. But any decision involving opening a new line of credit should be approached with caution. If you already have one credit card, stick to the one, and use it for emergency expenses only. If you start pulling out that credit card whenever you don’t feel like eating off your school’s meal plan or to buy a pair of shoes you spied at the mall the other day, you could be in trouble once that first bill arrives and you’re only able to pay the minimum balance, or worse yet, you pick up a fee for missing a payment.

Too many college students rack up thousands of dollars in debt seemingly overnight, hurting their credit scores in the process. In 2009, Sallie Mae reported the average credit card debt load of graduating college seniors was $4,100 - a 41-percent increase from the same study conducted in 2004. A low credit score will follow you out of college, and could affect whether you’re able to afford major purchases post-graduation. A high credit score, on the other hand, will get you better rates on things like your car insurance, and will be crucial when you’re finally looking to buy a home. Check out our tips on managing your money and your urge to splurge while in college, and you’ll be graduating without the stress of debt many grads experience.

Latest College & Financial Aid News

Udacity Discontinues Free Certificates

by Suada Kolovic

With the cost of a college education continuing to skyrocket, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have become increasingly popular. If you’re not familiar with MOOCs, they provide students with the opportunity to study high quality courses online with prestigious universities – we’re talking Harvard, Yale and Stanford – for free. Well, at least, that used to be the case: Udacity, one of the [...]

Some High Schools Allow Students to Opt Out of Lunch for More Class Time

by Suada Kolovic

Today's high school students have to face some serious obstacles when applying to college. With ballooning numbers of applications and fierce competition, educators and college counselors have long sung the praises of AP courses to stand out but for those students looking for an even bigger leg up on the competition, some high schools are allowing students to skip lunch in order to take [...]

SOTW: A Voice for Animals Contest

by Suada Kolovic

The Humane Education Network is pleased to announce its Annual “A Voice for Animals Contest" high school contest with prizes totaling $6,000 across several categories including video, essay and blogs. This year the contest concentrates on active involvement in projects which strive to mitigate that suffering of animals. Only entrants in the 14-15 year old section of the competition [...]

Follow Us:

facebook twitter rss feed