Broke College Student: How Not to Be

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Broke College Student: How Not to Be

As college students, we have all had our “broke times” or maybe you have been “broke” since you left home to come to school. Each semester I start off with a substantial amount of money from working, but I notice that I am left with nothing by the end of each semester. This leads to eating ramen noodles for about a month, which as we all know is not the healthiest meal plan.

My mother was not too proud of me for having to come home to borrow money until I could finish the semester and work again. We both came to the conclusion that we should sit down together and create a financial budget for the coming semester. I have concluded that once I receive the abundance of money right before the start of the semester, I have the feeling that I can spend it all within the first month. Therefore, I tried to come up with a solution to make my money last by creating a personalized budget.

I started out by writing down how much money was currently in my pocket and then calculating exactly how much I will owe to the University of Georgia and how much rent I will need to take out each month. After calculating these fixed costs, I also estimated expenses and subtracted them from the money in my pocket. For example, these expenses include: gas, groceries, dog food, eating out, etc. After subtracting out all of these expenses, I realized exactly how much I have left over to spend on extracurricular activities.

Not only does this set me up for success financially, it also allows my stress levels to deplete drastically. I find myself throughout the semester constantly stressed out about money. This, in turn, leads to unneeded stress flowing into my school work and studying. After creating the budget, I feel that I can completely focus on school rather than stressing out constantly about how I am going to survive the last month of the semester with no money. I am aware that the majority of college students encounter the same stresses on a daily basis, but it is so easy to reduce those stress levels and live a better life overall by being financially cautious and simply taking 30 minutes to create a budget.


Ashleigh Perez

Ashleigh Perez

January 21, 2019at 3:33 pm

I could not relate more with you on this! Every semester I am struggling to refrain myself from spending all my earned money so quickly (especially on amazing restaurants in Athens). They are simply hard to resist! This speaks to me especially because I too feel really stressed at times when I have to constantly ask my parents to transfer money into my account and then spend it right away. it is truly a horrible feeling! I guess we are all pretty much in the same boat. I kept a financial log of the money I make vs. what I spend and I found such surprising results! It has definitely led me to make better money decisions and put me on a better path going forward! Great blog!

Mariah Rickard

Mariah Rickard

January 21, 2019at 7:03 pm

I completely agree that a budget should be set in order to really maintain your spending. I personally see all the money I have at the beginning of the semester and tend to spend more than I should, simply because it looks like I have plenty, but then I get to the end and I live paycheck to paycheck. This semester I am also trying to budget myself simply by not eating out unless I have to. It is so easy to just swing by Tate and pick up Chick-fil-A or Panda Express, but at the end of the day five to six dollars here and there adds up! I have been adamant about packing my lunch everyday and not wasting that. On top of not spending money I am also eating healthier when I pack my lunch, so it really benefits me two ways. It sucks not being able to spend money whenever or wherever I want, but I truly believe the struggles with money we go through in college will really make us appreciate the income we will receive once we’re in the adult world!

Ashlynn Hengemihle

ashlynn hengemihle

February 12, 2019at 9:27 am

Wow! This is some great advice. I love how you worded it in such a humorous manner. I will definitely be following these guidelines in the future!!

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