Lauren Keller is a new-to-TRU storyteller and will be reporting on her orientation and transition experience throughout the upcoming year.
Throughout Grade 12, my focus was on graduating with the best possible grades. Now that I’m preparing for university, I realize how little I’ve thought about financial planning and money management. Not only do you pay for tuition, books, housing, food, bills (oof, that’s a long list when you start to write it all down), you want a little spare change as well. Every student needs a slush fund for emergencies, social occasions and self-care.
Like anything new, budgeting can be stressful at first, but it doesn’t have to be! Budgeting can also help you figure out what you allotted each month for essentials and whether you’ll need a part-time job throughout the semester or if you can wait until winter or summer break. The key is to start early and create a plan before you’re in a stressful situation without a solution.
I met with an awards advisor at Student Awards and Financial Aid who said making a budget and learning to stick to it is a form of self-care.
After some research, I compiled some tips to help make money management less stressful (and paying for university a little easier.)
- Refer to the website for answers to FAQs and various resources such as the downloadable Finance Guide
- Connect with Students Awards and Financial Aid to find support and help with money management. An Awards Advisor can provide more individualized support.
- Fill out a student budgeting worksheet to figure out your costs and your income
- Set financial goals to help you stay on track
- Break your budget down into smaller steps to make it easier to comprehend
- Check eligibility for non-repayable student grants, which are offered by both the Government of Canada and the Government of British Columbia.
Student Awards and Financial Aid advisors are available to offer guidance to both full- and part-time students in various financial areas. To help you plan your finances or explore possible funding resources, talk to an advisor and keep an eye out for budgeting workshops to learn more.