Click here to see this online.
test image


Thank you for your interest in joining the Student Money Management Center and University of Illinois Extension this summer for the Cash at College: Spending, Saving & Student Loans. Whether or not you were able to attend one of the four webinars, we'd like to provide some resources to help you win with money in the upcoming academic year.

Let us know if you have more questions by emailing us at And, good luck with the start of classes!

Check out the resources below!

Miss Cash at College? Watch the Recording!

When choosing a financial institution, you'll want to think about the following things:

  • Convenience
  • Services
  • Security
  • Costs

Shop Around: For a list of questions to ask when shopping for a new financial institution, check out University of Illinois Extension Financial Wellness for College Students' website.

You can check out the map below for brick & mortar locations of different financial institutions near the three main University of Illinois campuses, and you can watch our recorded webinar, Establishing Your Roots: Getting Started with Financial Services, if you'd like to learn more about choosing the right financial products & services for your needs.


Creating a budget and sticking to it is difficult for a lot of people, but there are so many tools you can use to both create a plan and track your spending that there’s no reason not to do it! Like with any other life skill, you just have to make it work with your own lifestyle and preferences.

Budget & Spending Plan Tools: Both the Student Money Management Center and University of Illinois Extension's Financial Wellness for College Students have budgeting and expense-tracking resources for you to use.

Let us know if you have other questions about the best tools to use to build your budget and track expenses! You can even request an individual financial coaching session by completing this form.

Be in the know. Stay updated on important events and activities at the University of Illinois to help build your financial future by subscribing to one of our e-newsletters. Each e-newsletter caters to your unique needs! Subscribe below:

Students    Parents    Staff & Faculty

According to a 2012 Sallie Mae report, “How America Pays", 35% of students borrowed education loans to pay for college and, although credit card ownership has decreased recently, 35% of undergraduates have a credit card.

Credit is an important financial tool that students need to learn how to manage wisely. Learn more about how credit card debt can affect you now, as well as in the future by watching the recorded webinar, "Staying on Good Terms: Credit & Debt".

Credit Management Tool: Use to help you manage your credit, pay down debt and plan your spending. This website was created by Utah State University Extension and

Financing Your College Degree

Financing Your Degree is about more than just covering tuition. Things like your books, supplies, rent and utilities or room and board, travel and living expenses all add to the cost of your degree, so let’s talk about how to pay for and even minimize some of those costs.

Know The Cost of Tuition & Fees: Check the registrar's website on your campus for the tuition and fee schedule to estimate your program of study:

Urbana-Champaign    Chicago    Springfield

Know Your Payment Options: Watch University Student Financial Services & Cashier Operations' Paying Your Bill Video Series to understand what forms of payment the Univesity accepts, how to check your account, the role of FERPA, how to pay your bill online and more!

  • To check your current student account balance, please visit Student Self-Service, sign in using your NetId and Password for your campus and click on the Student Account link under the Account Billing Information tab.

Control Your Living Expenses: Plan for your needs: There are plenty of tools, techniques and resources to help you meet your financial needs (e.g., a roof over your head, electricity, meals), so seek out offices and events to help you meet your basic needs while you can get them for free on campus!

Keep Track of Your Borrowing: Check your total indebtedness every semester by contacting your lenders and looking on for all of your federal loans. And know your repayment options by watching “Love Your Loan: Student Loan Repayment”!

Maximizing Your Time On Campus

Recently, there has been some discussion in the media on whether or not getting a college degree is even worth it anymore. Well, we’re here to tell you that it is!

You can look up what the average 20 year net Return On Investment (ROI) is for your college and degree program at this site from

Make sure you're doing everything you can to decrease the cost of your education by borrowing lesssearching for scholarshipsdiversifying your income and reducing your living expenses.

You should also be doing everything you can to increase your earnings potential by networking and taking advantage of services your fees are already paying for.


Earn credit towards the spending badge by taking this quiz on what you’ve learned through Cash at College:

By participating in three Spending Badge eligible events, you could earn a digital badge to enhance your online professional portfolio. Learn more about the Financial Literacy Badges Program by visiting:

Keep in contact with SMMC through social media by following us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram. Or, you can use the hashtag #UIMoney to continue sharing your thoughts about money with other members of the University of Illinois community throughout the year. 

Congratulations again on joining the University of Illinois family!


Student Money Management Center and University of Illinois Extension