Living like a student

Loans, budgets and savings—three aspects of personal finance that college freshman are expected to handle, ready or not. Thankfully, UNI has a program called “Live Like a Student” specifically designed for those new financial challenges. Kaylin DiCicco, a senior business organizational management major, especially loved the program.  

Classroom of students

The content of the program is enhanced with real-life examples that prepare students to financially plan for themselves.

The content of the program is enhanced with real-life examples that prepare students to financially plan for themselves. During the first week, Kaylin remembers that she was assigned to keep track of every penny she spent for seven days.

“The real lesson showed me how little coffees, gum, and eating out was expensive and Keurig cups were a joke for my budget,” Kaylin said. She now plans out her meals and doesn’t buy coffee from the gas station every morning.

When asked about any challenges she faced during the program, Kaylin stated, “I don’t recall there being a challenge other than you were there to learn. So a challenge was to soak up as much knowledge.” Soaking up that knowledge helped Kaylin stop living from “paycheck to paycheck” and Christmas shopping wasn’t a burden for her this year.

Scholarships are another major aspect of the program. Kaylin was provided with helpful scholarship websites and she put that information to use, “Instead of crafting or watching TV, I would search for scholarships. Any and all that I qualified for.”

For a lot of students, simply finding the right scholarships to apply for is the hardest part of the process; knowing where to find legitimate applications helps students get the process started in a less stressful way. 

Kaylin would recommend “Live Like a Student” to anyone, especially freshmen, because the program also provides guidance on managing your academic credit load and the cost-saving potential of taking fifteen credit hours per semester. “Getting in the habit of taking fifteen credits is nice because you can get through some major stuff during your years at UNI,” she added.

Her biggest takeaway from the course? “College is the beginning of a better life.” Knowing how to efficiently plan financially during college prepares you for even more success after graduation.

Live Like a Student courses begin again on Monday, Jan. 29. Students can register here.

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