Money Management Tips for Students
When you’re in college, managing money can be a very challenging thing to do. Students attending college may not be used to buying things for themselves, having a job, or managing a bank account. It can be challenging to save money and prioritize purchases. For this reason, I would like to offer five tips for students.
1. Open a bank account
I strongly encourage students to open a bank account at one of the banks in the Houghton area. Having an account is a great way to keep track of your money without it burning a hole in your pocket. You don’t have to worry about losing money or having it stolen. Also, if you have your money in a bank account, you are more likely to know how much you have available to you and you can save your money for special purchases. There are several banks in the local area; check out the Keweenaw Local Resource Guide for a complete listing.
2. Be cautious with credit cards
An important part of becoming an adult is effectively managing your credit. College students must be very cautious applying for credit cards and making charges on credit. You should limit yourselves to one credit card and should limit the purchases you make on credit. It is a good idea to not buy something on credit that you couldn’t buy with cash the same day. It is also important that you keep track of your credit card bills and are never late on payments. Late fees and increased interest rates can take even more money out of a college student’s small income. Some students find it helpful to have their credit card payments automatically pull out of their bank account; if you choose to do this, you should make sure you always have enough money in your account to cover your bills and make sure you are still reviewing your credit card statement carefully for any errors or incorrect charges.
3. Get involved in campus activities
A great way to have fun for free or low cost is to get involved in campus activities. As a student, part of being in college is taking advantage of all the great performances and events that take place on campus. At Michigan Tech there is always something going on. Whether it’s a performance in the Rozsa Center, a comedian in the Memorial Union Building, an athletic event, or a student organization meeting, there is something for everyone to get involved in. If you’re a college student looking for something fun to do, check out the Student Organization List, the University Calendar of Events, the Student Activities Comedy Series schedule, the Rozsa Center Shows, and the Athletic Calendar.
4. Go on an adventure
The options are really endless when it comes to local adventure. You could go to the beach; drive along the Keweenaw; go kayaking, hiking, birdwatching, or mountain climbing; or take part in a local community event. There are several activities that students can do for free within walking distance of campus. For a listing of local community events, go to the Keweenaw Peninsula Chamber of Commerce website. The Michigan Tech’s Outdoor Adventure Program also helps students out who would like to go on an adventure by providing opportunities to participate in various trips and rent equipment at a very low cost. It’s amazing the money you can save by making a conscious effort to stay active and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.
5. Get a Job
Getting a job in college can be a great way to earn money, save money, and get valuable work experience. Having a job can help you be independent and learn important life skills. There are several opportunities for employment at Michigan Tech and in the local community. Michigan Tech’s Career Services is a great resource for students searching for employment. Career Services has a listing of local jobs that are available for Michigan Tech students. Career Services also hosts several interview skills workshops and resumé review sessions throughout the year to help students be successful in finding employment. In addition, each semester there is a Student Employment Expo held in the Memorial Union Building where students can learn more about on-campus jobs and the departments that hire students. Follow this link for a partial listing of the University departments that hire students.
These are just a few helpful tips of things students can do to effectively manage their money. College can be expensive but in many ways it doesn’t have to be. There’s plenty of ways to have fun while saving money!
Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have!
-Samantha Allen, firstname.lastname@example.org