Money matters are on everyone’s mind. A college education can increase your lifetime earnings substantially, but you have to earn the degree first. Your path to financial wellness and your college degree are as easy as 1-2-3:
- Be Informed
If you have excess funds after the loan is disbursed, return it to your lender to avoid paying interest on money you do not need. Your goal is to earn your degree without accumulating unnecessary debt. Thanks to rising tuition and a tough job market, in 2011 college seniors graduated with an average of nearly $27,000 in student loan debt last year. Additionally in 2010, according to Sallie Mae, on average half of college students had four or more credit cards. That same year, graduating seniors had on average more than $4,100 in credit card debt, up from about $2,900 in 2006.
In general, your monthly debt payment (student loans and credit cards) should not be more than 8% of your monthly salary. Example: If your annual salary is $30,000, your monthly salary is $2500; 8% of $2500 = $200. At this salary level, your cumulative debt should not exceed $17,376.
Create and Follow an Educational Plan
Develop a semester-by-semester plan to graduate, beginning in your first year of college. Your future financial wellness is connected to earning your college degree. You are likely to hit a few pitfalls along the way. Remain committed to earning your degree by updating your plan every semester with your academic advisor.
- Create and Follow a Monthly Budget
Learn to live like a college student now, you can avoid living like one for the rest of your life. Make smart financial decisions everyday. A budget is not about self-deprivation, it is about making choices. A budget gives you control.
WIN MONEY BY TALKING ABOUT MONEY! The Southeast Financial Literacy Project is sponsoring a video contest to promote financial responsibility. The Registration Form can be found at the link below; it contains the rules and information needed to enter this contest and win:
- 1st- $400
- 2nd- $200
- 3rd- $100
- 4th -$100 Southeast Bookstore Gift Certificate
- 5th- Student Recreation Group Fitness Passes
- 6th Student Recreation Group Fitness Passes
Not only will you win a great prize if you place in the top six, but your video will be posted on our website, www.semo.edu/money and Facebook page.
Use the links below to make the most of your education.
The Financial Litercy Project introduces Southeast students to educational topics such as budgeting, credit, spending habits, and student loan management. The program also emphasizes the imporance of academic success to financial success.
Students interested in learning more about these topics may contact Mr. Dominique Bailey, Personal Financial Literacy Graduate Assistant, at (573) 651-2198, or by email at email@example.com. Please call in advance for an individual appointment or to schedule a financial literacy seminar for a group.