Many college students go into their college years with zero knowledge of finances.
This ends up affecting them and many end up in piles of debt.
They need to be well informed and educated about all the financial aspects of their life away from home.
It is important to have financial clarity and work through gaps or doubts about their potential expenses.
Finishing college without much debt is completely possible with proper financial awareness and research.
Let us look at a few reasons why financial awareness is important for college students.
- Helps You Fund College
Getting a college education is expensive and many students are unable to afford it.
Scholarships and grants are a great way to fund your education without falling into debt or financial liabilities.
It is important to know the kind of scholarships you are eligible for depending upon your GPA, financial status and other special conditions. Many scholarships are renewable each year so don’t forget to check their renewable status.
Financial aid may or may not get affected depending upon the scholarship you receive. Contact the financial services of the college to check whether you are still applicable for aid.
It is also important to note that you don’t have to pay anything to receive a scholarship.
Many unaware students fall into the scam of paying a small amount of money on certain websites which claim to give them a big scholarship amount.
- Budgeting In College
College students tend to overspend during the first few weeks and this can make them go broke very fast.
It is important to have a clear figure of the amount you are allowed to spend weekly or monthly. This will help you keep track of your expenses and make sure you don’t spend over the specified figure.
You should also budget for days you go out or take vacations since many students tend to spend uncontrollably during those times.
- Avoiding Financial Stress
Students with a lack of financial awareness are more likely to go through financial stress and burnout.
It is very important to be clear of every financial thing before you leave for college.
A few questions you should ask yourself include:
- Can I afford going to this college?
- Will I be able to avail scholarships for this program?
- Will they provide me financial aid?
- How expensive will my accommodation be?
You should have answers for all these questions in order to avoid financial stress during college.
There are many students who drop out from college because of financial pressure. Spending some time to analyze your situation and figuring out your funding methods will give you financial clarity.
You won’t have to drop out of college midway because of lack of money. It is always better to continue since there are several reasons to not drop out of college.
- Part-Time Jobs During College
Working during college will help you make extra money. It is important to be aware of the different kinds of part-time jobs which are available to you.
This will help you to pay rent and bear additional expenses which your scholarship doesn’t cover.
While picking a part-time job it is important to consider a few factors like distance and hourly wages.
Avoid picking jobs which pay you less for a lot of work. If you are unable to find on-campus positions you can try for positions outside campus.
Online jobs and freelancing are great options since they help you avoid transportation costs.
- Managing Credit Cards
College students who mismanage credit cards usually end up in a lot of debt.
Credit shouldn’t be your first option but if you end up using it, you should know how to use it properly.
Maintaining good credit scores are important to improve your chances of getting jobs or even renting an apartment.
Students should try to understand personal finance basics from their parents or guides and be responsible with money while in college.
Making use of expense tracking apps and reviewing your finances every month will also help you stay in your budget.