Student Life will be hosting a Brown Bag series focusing on personal finance literacy throughout the Fall 2012 semester, said Student Life Director Erin Logan.
“Last spring I applied for a grant through HigherOne for a little extra funding to come in from them to help us pay for books and resources to do with our programming on financial literacy,” Logan said. She said the grant, which is also an initiative of the state, caught her eye due to a problem she sees around her office.
“I see students in my office daily who need money for the bus, or who tell me they haven’t eaten breakfast because they don’t have food in their house,” Logan said. “And the whole time they’re on their iPhones, or carrying their Coach bag.
“There’s a disconnect between wants and needs. I was a college student, and I know it’s easy to blur the lines between the two.”
Logan said her approach to setting up the classes was to see what financial trends were going on in the media, and then create sessions based on those trends.
Logan said the ideas then become realistic and applicable to the average student. She used couponing as a good example.
“There’s a big couponing craze going on right now, but extreme couponing is not realistic for the average person. I have a student who’s hopefully going to be able to teach a session on couponing.” Logan said the student’s parents are not native English speakers, and are not able to speak fluently. “So she helps to raise her three younger sisters and does all the working and funding for the family. With that, she’s learned to coupon realistically, and save her family a lot of money while going to school full time, working and maintaining a very high GPA,” Logan said.
“So she’ll use her personal stories and tips to help students create a couponing plan. We’ll be providing coupon organizers, personal journals and a book on building a basic budget when you don’t have a disposable income of $100,000.”
Other parts of the series also will be taught by students, while some will be taught by finance professionals, Logan said.
“We’re contacting financial institutions in town to help us with presentations on personal credit, budgeting basics and how to build credit. We’re going to do a series that helps students look at finances realistically when gas is $3.50 a gallon.”
Logan said the series begins Sept. 12.
For more information, visit the offices of Student Life in the Main Building, or go to www.occc.edu/studentlife, or call 405-682-1611, ext. 7523.