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College is a time to enjoy yourself, get out and do things, and see the world. While it is very fun, many of these things cost money. There are so many ways to save money or keep track of it. Everyone has different experiences, which is important to consider. Some people have jobs or work during school. Lots of people pay their way through college on their own, and others might receive financial help from their families. No matter the situation, keeping track of your spending is so important, so here are some tips to help!

Make a Budget

This will look different for everyone, but making a budget is so important. At the very least, you should be aware of how much you’re spending and checking your bank account. Other options include making a spreadsheet, writing it out on paper, or setting goals for how much you’re allowed to spend on things each month. This is important so that you’re not spending more money than you have. Personally, I use a spreadsheet and track how much money I spend or make each month. 

Get a Credit Card

College is a great time to get a credit card if you don’t already have one. Many banks and credit card companies offer cards geared towards college students. Make sure to only spend money that you have in your bank account and try to pay each statement in full. This will help boost your credit score which will help you out in the future. 

Find Ways to Make and Save Money

There are lots of jobs on and off campus that are great opportunities to make money. You can also babysit, sell things, or find other ways to make extra money in your free time. Another option for managing your money is to find ways to save money. Using student discounts or regular discounts, cutting back on unnecessary expenses, and creating a budget can help to limit spending. I’ve also set goals to cut my spending in half from the previous month or not spending money on clothes, for example, in the past. 

Think Long Term

With money, it’s important to think long term. Spending a few extra dollars here and there won’t make a huge difference in the future in my opinion. It’s important to not miss out on life experiences just for the sake of saving money. Still, I try to keep savings in case of emergency and to have for the future. 

Nicole Green

Washington '25

Nicole Green is a freshman at the University of Washington planning to study Public Health. She loves cooking, baking, hiking, traveling, playing volleyball, and spending time with friends and family.
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