By Derek Langhorn
CashCourse is an online service geared towards students, but available to anyone, that helps users to make informed financial decisions, learn about the seriousness of student loans, and find out how to make a budget.
CashCourse is a free service provided to colleges by the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE). NEFE is a public service that has been working to provide financial education for the masses for over 25 years.
Barbara Leveque, the director of the Workfirst program at Whatcom Community College, said that this service could help many students at Whatcom.
“We swim in debt because we aren’t financially literate,” Leveque said. She hopes that utilizing CashCourse will “provide students with tools to develop a financial plan.”
Many students rely on student loans to get them through school. “People don’t understand the seriousness of student loans,” Leveque said.
Leveque said that many students do not understand interest on loans, nor do they think ahead about how they will pay back their loans.
NEFE, which has set up the CashCourse program for campuses around the country, is intended to teach students that financial literacy can be learned by anyone, regardless of background.
NEFE states on its website that their mission is to help people in their lives by giving them a foundation of financial literacy and the tools they need to make good financial decisions.
CashCourse shows users ways to calculate their student loan debt and find out how much money they will make once they complete college and get the job they want.
It can be accessed by anyone, not just students. It has many recommendations to help the average person become more financially secure.
The program has sections on budgeting and financial planning, overspending, banking money, setting financial goals, investing money, and more.
The site also has calculators that can help students to understand how interest on student loans works, and find out just how long it will take to pay off their debt.
Leveque said that by using CashCourse, “students can create a better life for themselves,” and that, “when people have financial struggles, it adds stress.”
“If someone followed the advice [offered by CashCourse] they may make different decisions, saving a bit, not taking loans, and begin the process of maintaining financial security,” Leveque said.
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