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College Student


Minors + Majors Descriptions 

According to Bachelors Portal, the definition of a college major is an academic subject area that students commit to during undergraduate studies. Often, American universities use the word “concentration” when referring to majors. 


The college minor is a way for undergraduate students to get some extra flavour into their degree/ The secondary area of study will be present within the student's college diploma. According to Bachelors Portal, the definition of a college minor is a way for students to get extra knowledge on a specific matter. Often, having a minor can give students a competitive advantage in applications. It also is a great way for students to experiment on other passions that the student may have. 


Reference Link:'s%20time%20to,minor%20is%20the%20secondary%20one.


Check out the app store for free great apps that help you out during college!

Some examples of free apps that we found: 

-My Study Life

-Otter /



-CliffsNotes Study Guides

-Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Oxford Dictionary 




-iTunes U

-Lit Charts 

-Microsoft Office Applications

-RealCalc Scientific Calculator 




-Use scholarship websites! Some scholarship websites are not always efficient because they can be not so clear on the eligibility but for the most part these two websites are some of our favorites: 





-Research for different opportunities where you can find scholarships both locally and nationally! For example, in Kansas, there is a website called Greater Kansas City Foundation that provides students with links to different scholarship opportunities. 



-Check for opportunities in your state and community that offer scholarship/grants! Such as the Hispanic Development Scholarship, KC Scholars, etc. Keep in track of the scholarships that your college counselor provides to your senior class. Take a look at our Advice + Tips page to see how you can organize scholarship deadlines! 


-Check in with your school’s Federal TRIO programs! Or if your school does not offer Federal TRIO programs, research for any campus resources on campus for First-Generation students on their academic website. They are there to help you during the college applying process and scholarships that are available for you in your state!

Financial Literacy

Budget & Healthy Spending

It is important to keep track of creating a budget while you are at college: 

  • Know where your money is going 

  • Prevent overspending 

  • Stay out of/ minimize your debt 

  • Save as much money as you can! 

  • Make good financial choices, be mindful of your spending!


Getting started to Budget & Healthy Spending

  • Look at your bank account, take a look where your money has gone in the last month? How did you spend it? Download your bank’s app on your phone, it is helpful to see your financial stats! 


Money in v. Money Out 

  • How much has been deposited in your account from your work study job? How much have you spent (Ex: supplies, textbooks, printing, etc). 


  • Try your best on organizing your spending into categories!

    •  Examples: books & supplies, transportation, person expenses, food, etc. 

  • What bills do you have to pay between this paycheck and the next? 


  • What projects do you have coming up for which you may need supplies?

  • Are there any textbooks or upcoming expenses that need to be taken care of? 


  • Any events or plans that you have coming up that may require money? -Hanging out with friends, movies, etc.? 


  • Any transportation needs? -Lyft, Uber, gas for your car? 


How do you keep track of what is spent? 

  • You can use an online checkbook that provides students with the ability to input budget each time you are paid!

Understanding credit 

  • Credit = The ability to buy something today and pay for it later 

Why is good credit important? 

  • May be eligible for lower interest rates on credit cards and loans. There is a better chance to get approval for credit cards and loans, better insurance rates, easier approval on rental properties 


Student Loan Repayment 

  • Federal student loans are automatically placed on In-School Deferment while you are enrolled at least half the time (6 credits). 

  • Subsidized loans do not accrue interest while you are enrolled in schools. 

  • Unsubsidized loans do not accrue interest while you are enrolled in school. 

  • The interest rate of the year 2019-2020 is 4.53% , Keep in mind that the interest rate for each year may change. 

  • After graduation, a borrower is given a 6 month grace period. 


Responsible Student Loan Borrowing 

  • Think about what you need and not just what you are allowed to borrow.

  • Consider your monthly expenses, make sure you keep track of them so they do not catch up to you last minute. 

  • Consider your income, how many jobs do you have on campus?

  • How much do you make weekly and how do you save it up without spending your entire check? 


References: Melissa Donahue, Associate Director, Student Financial Services Financial Literacy Presentation for Project Thrive.

Paying For College:

1. Completing the FAFSA (if applicable)​​​​​

Types of financial aid you might be eligible for after completing the FAFSA:

  • Pell Grants: Provide need-based grants to undergraduate students. The money does not have to be repaid (unless you withdraw from the school before finishing an enrollment period). 

  • State aid: Primarily is available to students who attend college in their state of residence. 

  • Institutional aid: Is provided by public and private colleges and universities to help their students pay for tuition and fees. 

  • Federal Work Study Programs: Are offered by colleges to help their students earn money by working part-time. 

  • Federal Direct Loans (Subsidized and unsubsidized): Are available to undergraduate and graduate students attending colleges at least half the time. These loans will need to be repaid. 

2. Apply for scholarships! 

Make the time to apply! 

  • Determination pays off with scholarship applications - especially since it’s money you don’t have to repay. Make your applications part of your weekly routine, and apply to as many as you can.

  • Master the essay 

    • Application committees are looking for what sets you apart.

  • Consider who you know 

    • Some workplaces and civic groups offer scholarships, so ask your family if they have any connections. 

  • Little amounts add up 

    • For every $20,000 prize, there are thousands of smaller awards that receive far fewer applicants. Seek out all possible options regardless of amount- it all adds up! 

  • Get an editor 

    • Find someone who wants to help you with your scholarship search, and ask them to review your applications for grammar and flow. 

  • Talk with the financial aid office 

    • If you know where you’re going to college, check with the school’s financial aid office to see if they can help you with your search. 

  • Estimate and compare your total college costs 

    • Go to your college/university website and search for the Net Price Calculator or you can add the costs yourself! 

    • See the estimated costs for one year at that school 

    • Find out what financial aid may be available 

3. Determine if you need additional money for college 

  • Explore additional college financing options

    • Tuition payment plans: 

      • May be available by colleges to help their students pay tuition in installments instead in one whole payment. 

  • Federal Direct PLUS Loans: 

    • Credit-based student loans offered by the federal government. 

  • Student loans 

    • Direct Unsubsidized:

      • Interest rate is 4.53% (changes year by year)

      • All students are eligible 

      • Students are responsible for the interest on the loan during the lifetime of the loan. 

    • Direct Subsidized:

      • Interest rate is 4.53% (changes year by year)

      • Eligible students demonstrate Financial Need through the FAFSA 

      • No interest is charged on the loan while the student is in school. 

(References: Wells Fargo)

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