A new club on campus, the Financial Literacy Association, offers financial advice to students from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday, in room 137 at Delzell Hall.
Student advisers in the club take a course at the Portage County University of Wisconsin-Extension, qualifying them to advise fellow students.
“Most of the questions we get are about student loans,” said senior Emily Stewart, student manager of the association.
Even though the majority of questions pertain to student loans and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, this organization wants to help students with every aspect of financial health.
“I want to help them figure out what they need to get established by the time they get out in the world,” said senior Dan Diebitz, family living education intern.
Advisers help students achieve this with methods like implementing a spending plan as opposed to a budget. Stewart said most people do not realize how much they spend.
“We have them save their receipts and come back with them,” she said.
Advisers also help students establish credit. Stewart said a credit history should be started as soon as possible; unfortunately, most students do not take the time to get their credit figured out.
Both Stewart and Diebitz said there is a fear surrounding credit cards they would also like to dispel to a certain degree.
“Everyone needs a history,” Diebitz said. “It’s important to start now to start that history.”
Using a credit card is similar to taking out a loan. If debt is not paid right away, interest will accrue.
Stewart said people often spend their whole limit, which actually hurts credit.
“You should really only spend 70 percent of the max on your card in order to build credit properly,” Stewart said.
ATM charges are another factor advisers like to warn people about. Even if the ATM advertises no charge, the bank might still charge.
For those students who cannot make the allotted time slots during the week, the group can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.