Students, this is your warning: use your student loan money wisely. Statistics show too many students end up using their leftover student loan funds for unnecessary things, ranging from eating out at restaurants to even going on vacations. When you get student loans, especially ones you realize you don’t need, it can be easy to think they’re good for anything. But the long-term effects of doing this are going to be felt for an extremely long time.
It should be noted: there are some things it’s ok to spend your loan payments on besides tuition, especially if you’re going through a financially difficult time. Sometimes rent money isn’t available, and maybe the meal plans are a bit too expensive for you. That’s understandable. Just remember: if you can use other things to pay for your current needs, do so. The long term effects will be far less damaging.
Students often assume that the effects of student loans won’t hit them. Perhaps they believe they’re going into a successful field where they’ll make enough that they won’t have to worry about it. However, according to Accenture, a company that studies college students and their predictions and outcomes after finishing school, 40% of recent college students make less than $25,000 annually. Only 65% are in fields relating to their majors. Even STEM students are often recorded not going into their intended field. These statistics make for a bad time when students are trying to claw their way out of debt.
If you borrowed more than you need, you can return them. Save yourself money in the long term. Obviously, sometimes you need all the loans you can get, but if you’re using them for trivial things like a trip to PINK or at the local GameStop, it’s time to stop. Instead, get a part time job. Working will give you money to spend on the less important things or activities you want. It will also earn you experience you’ll need when you step into the workplace after college.