Sign Up Today To Receive
The Best of the Bee Newsletter!

Consolidated Credit

Give Your Grad the Gift of Financial Education

By: Monica Victor

Each year over a million college students strut across the stage – donning their cap and gown, diploma and more often than not student loan debt averaging $27,253. But according to a study by Arkansas State University, they often lack one skill – financial education.

With graduation season upon us, while you may be thinking of gifting the grad in your life with dinners and furniture and college rings, Andrea Woroch, a consumer and money-saving expert thinks the best gift you can give is one that will help boost the grad’s financial smarts for succeeding in the real world.

Her suggestion comes on the heels of  a study by Arkansas State University that  found, “Over one-third of students surveyed admitted to having no idea how much credit card or student loan debt they owed and overestimated future earnings by more than 20 percent  –  $14,768.12 more than the average salaries for graduates at their respective universities.”

There is no doubt that stepping into the real world can be nerve racking and stepping out with no budgeting skills or money smarts can make it especially daunting.  As Woroch puts it “entering the real world upon graduation is going to be a real wake-up call!” and so she offers these 7 gift ideas to help boost a grad’s financial smarts for succeeding in the real world.

1. A Financial Planning Session: A certified financial advisor can help the grad in your life craft a budget and a financial plan to manage their money effectively. They can also help them in managing their student loans, provide tips for paying off debt faster and stress the importance of saving for retirement early and the overall improvement of their financial outlook.

2. Personal Finance Books: Woroch says a book that offers personal finance advice is invaluable to a generation laden with debt. She thinks they’re great especially because they are usually authored by writers who have gone through the experience. She suggests: Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties by Beth Kobliner; The Broke and Beautiful Life by Stefanie O’Connell; or Complete Guide to Personal Finance: For Teenagers for high school grads heading off to college.

MissMoneyBee adds:  PowerUp: Taking Charge of your Financial Destiny by Howard Dvorkin, CPA and Credit Hell: How to Dig Out of Debt also by Howard Dvorkin.

3. Career Coaching: College grads usually struggle to find employment and often settle for jobs that are not worth their college degree. Woroch says, “A career counselor will guide a college grad through the job search process while identifying career options based on individual passions, talents and training.”  The average fee for a job coach is around $50 per hour. Woroch says check the list of Top 25 Certified Job Search Coaches on LinkedIn for help finding one for your grad. They can also check the Third Fifth Bank Brand of You Campaign website for free resume writing and headshot tips.

MissMoneyBee also encourages students to use the career department at their school for free resume writing tips, mock interview sessions and information on career fairs and networking.

Click to read more

Here you can get the buzz on tactics and tips to successfully manage your money and avoid credit problems.These booklets cover the basics of creating and using a budget, how women can manage their personal finances, how to cope with financial stress, teaching your children about money, preventing identity theft, how to avoid common money mistakes, the basics of credit cards and much more! Click on the booklet cover to launch these free PDF files. Learn how to successfully manage money and avoid credit problems. This guide was created with two purposes in mind; first, to help people create and use a successful budget; second, to provide proven strategies for avoiding excess debt. This basic ‘Credit 101’ publication explores the pros and cons of using credit, provides a guide and calculation formula to help consumers find out how much credit they can afford, and offers advice on what elements should be considered before applying for a credit card, how to build a positive credit history, and existing credit rights. When it comes to women and money, the news can be gloomy. We live longer; we earn less, and are less secure in retirement. But the news isn’t all bad, because women can also be terrific budgeters, investors, savers and entrepreneurs. Everyone makes mistakes with their money. It happens, but it can lead to problems, and these problems may escalate if you don’t do the right things to correct them. This guide is to help you solve the money mistakes that could occur during your lifetime. The world of finances can be tricky and if you don’t act to correct these mistakes you could be putting your financial future at risk.
If you’re like most people, you probably learned about money from the “School of Hard Knocks.” If you were lucky, you may have had parents who talked openly about money with you, and perhaps even showed you how to earn and save money. This guide helps parents talk to their children about smart money management and the value of money. This publication discusses the fastest growing federal crime in the country and provides steps one can take to minimize the chances of personal information being stolen and used by a thief. The first part of this brochure is organized into checklists you can use to put these ideas into practice. The second part of this brochure will give you steps to take if you are a victim. This booklet will give you an overview of the basics of getting a mortgage, buying a home, and building equity. If you’re under financial stress, you may be arguing with your spouse or family members about money, experiencing headaches or panic attacks, hiding bills or receipts from family members, or finding it difficult to sleep at night. Your eating habits may have gone south, and you may find it hard to make it through the day. Use this guide to help you deal with your stress.