Work, save, use credit cards wisely.
For me, there are several important things I can do while in college to ensure that I start off on the right foot financially when I graduate to include working part-time, saving money, and avoiding credit card expenditures. With this said, I have already obtained a part-time job on campus to assist me and my family with personal expenses; travel, personal items, entertainment, etc. Having a part-time job on campus is convenient and is a perfect way to build my resume for entering the workplace after college. Although I plan to use cash for most purchases and avoid unnecessary costs, credit cards offer a chance to establish a solid credit history. It will be important that I keep track of my spending, follow a monthly budget and not use my card for routine living expenses. I will only use it to cover emergency expenses since my parents will be four hours away. And, if I use a credit card, I plan to pay off the balance in full each month. Student loan liability payments will be enough for me once I graduate. I will continue to seek out scholarship opportunities while in college. Even a small scholarship can aid me in taking out smaller student loans which, in turn, means less money I have to pay back after I graduate. However, I think to accomplish these financial goals and to combine these into one, single answer; the most important thing I can do while in college to ensure that I start off on the right foot financially when I graduate is to be able to distinguish between what I want and what I need. And as I have learned along the way and continue to learn, the two are not one and the same.
Blair Drum, 2012 graduate of Rossview High School