The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

NE seminar aids money concerns

By Solange Kalala/reporter

Healthy financial habits are the key to avoiding debt, a TCC financial specialist told NE Campus students earlier this month during a Money Management seminar.

James Guguei gave students advice and recommendations on managing their expenses and guidelines on improving their budgets.

Guguei showed students how to use EDwise, an online financial planning guide. He used the program to describe a student with an income of $6,800 from a student grant and about $21,280 in expenses.

With a $14,480 difference, Guguei indicated that the fictitious student could not pay all his bills and had a negative balance.

“Looking at his income and expenses, the advice is to cut some expenses and check on some other incomes that might be available without (the student) knowing,” he said.

Guguei also provided some basic guidelines for personal budgeting and encouraged students to live by a budget.

“The first thing to do is determine your income, reduce unnecessary expenses and better anticipate your monetary needs,” he said. “Because people attempt to attach their emotion and psychology to money, a spend-less, save-more lifestyle is the key to reduce stress.”

Students should focus on needs versus wants when it comes to spending, Guguei said.

“Instead of living in a house, a roommate or dorm will be advisable … use of public transportation versus a car (or) buying groceries versus eating out,” he said.

Guguei said there are many opportunities for students who need financial help. He pointed out that at TCC, students can use only one application to apply for all available scholarships.

Bill McMullen, NE Campus financial aid director, joined Guguei at the seminar and encouraged students to apply for grants and scholarships.

“Loans are on the rise because of the economy. I am too nervous about it,” McMullen said. “But financial aid wants you to get those scholarships and grants, so you can have minimal debt possible.”

Guguei also explored a post-college budget, advising students to anticipate expenses and save 10 percent of their income each month for emergencies.

“Be prepared for the unexpected, write out a budget, reduce and track expenses and use a spending plan,” Guguei said. “Sticking to the budget is the key to reduce stress, to save you money and to take control.”

Kimberly Asanza, a NE Campus student, said she benefited from the presentation.

“Even though I am living with my parents now, I learned how I could save through this workshop,” she said.

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