Improve Your Budgeting Skills
Learning Hub Ambassadors offer up advice on how to budget and save money as a CU Denver studentMar 6, 2023
One thing that can be indispensable to any college student is proper budgeting skills. For some, it can seem like too much of a time commitment in the face of project deadlines, interpersonal commitments, and flexible day-to-day costs that can be hard to account for. However, through budgeting, many students find they have stronger time-management skills and a better sense of autonomy and personal accountability. As we get further into the semester, it’s especially important for students to be able to have peace of mind as more tests and work stack up. Some of the students behind the Learning Resource Center have been willing to offer their budgeting insight.
Learning Hub Ambassador Zahra’s advice centers around self-control. “Stop eating out if you have food at home, no impulse buying, and set time-specific goals where you don’t spend any money at all.” She encourages students to stay strict and remember the potential consequences of bargaining themselves out of their own goals. It’s especially important to have consistent, strong consequences that actually motivate your habits.
Another Learning Hub Ambassador, Shi, says they are able to save money by keeping to a specific game plan. “Keep a sum of all of your bills, subtract them from your income, and then right before your next pay period make sure to transfer your leftover money into your savings account rounded down to the lowest ten.” For example, if you have leftover money of around $24, go ahead and save that extra $20. It doesn’t have to be the most official or fancy list compiled, but it’s a simple way of keeping your expenses organized and helps to keep check of what you can or can’t spend.
Learning Hub Ambassador Ethan has said he’s able to save by finding the preexisting resources around him. “I cut down on food costs by going to the pantry in the Wellness Center and the Share Meals app.” The Lynx food pantry, located in the CU Denver Wellness Center, functions on a 10-point system where all CU Denver students can use points to get free food and hygiene products each week. Share Meals, as the title suggests, is an app that connects you to the CU Denver and Tri-Campus community when you sign up with your university credentials in order to alert you to what nearby events have free leftover meals. Ethan says there have been days on end where he hasn’t had to pay for delivery because of these tools, which really goes to save money.
You can also always drop in with Financial Aid advisors at the Student Commons or reach out by email at FinanciaAid@UCDenver.edu to get a better idea of how to deal with your specific financial situation. Alongside that, Campus Well is an available website with an expansive number of articles on topics. These topics range from meal prepping, maintaining a “side hustle,” retirement-saving methods, how to manage financial and emotional stress, and more.
There is no end to the number of resources available to students attempting the uphill battle of saving for their individual goals while in school. “It’s all just a matter of getting connected to those resources,” Ethan promises.