Iowa State University
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News Service

News Service:

Annette Hacker, director,
(515) 294-3720

Office: (515) 294-4777

8-19-08

Contacts:

Roberta Johnson, Office of Student Financial Aid, (515) 294-2223, rljohns@iastate.edu

Erin Schwartz, Office of Student Financial Aid, (515) 294-2223, financialaid@iastate.edu

Annette Hacker, News Service, (515) 294-3720, annette@iastate.edu

Iowa State University offers online financial literacy education for students

AMES, IOWA--"How can I pay for my tuition next semester?" "Can I afford to go away on spring break?" "Should I get a credit card?" "How can I make nutritious meals on a budget when I barely know how to cook?" "Is it better to buy or lease a car?" "What are needs vs. wants?"

College students, many of whom are managing their own money for the first time, have a myriad of questions about how to budget and plan for a successful financial future. Roberta Johnson has heard all the questions, but knows students and their parents struggle to find clear, factual, unbiased information.

"They ask friends for advice, but everyone's situation is a little different. So people go searching for information online, and it quickly becomes overwhelming to wade through pages of content on different web sites, especially since some of that content is tied to advertising or may not offer the most objective information. It's frustrating," said Johnson, who directs Iowa State University's Office of Student Financial Aid.

That's why Johnson and her staff decided to provide a one-stop, online financial literacy resource to ISU students through the nonprofit National Endowment for Financial Education®. The web site is called CashCourse, and its sole purpose is to help students manage their financial habits and improve their financial well-being.

Students can access the free, content-rich site through Iowa State's financial aid web page at www.financialaid.iastate.edu, or through www.cashcourse.org/iastate. CashCourse includes tips on budgeting and financial planning, paying for college, saving money, applying for work, paying taxes, understanding insurance and preventing identity theft, among many other useful topics.

ISU's Johnson said the web site was recommended to her by Tahira Hira, professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies and a member of President George W. Bush's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy.

Iowa State is one of 156 universities across the U.S. that have partnered with the National Endowment for Financial Education to provide free access to CashCourse. Johnson said she thinks students will find the content straightforward and appealing, because the site has no advertising or links to any commercial products.

"CashCourse offers a reliable resource to help young adults develop financial know-how," said Ted Beck, president and CEO of the Colorado-based National Endowment for Financial Education. "Through attention to the needs of today's college students, this program will help young adults gain the financial savvy necessary for the real world."

CashCourse, however, doesn't assist students with their financial aid awards at Iowa State or any other university. For specific information pertaining to financial aid awards, students should contact ISU's Office of Student Financial Aid at (515) 294-2223 or view their personal information online via AccessPlus.

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Quick look

ISU's Office of Student Financial Aid is providing a one-stop, online financial literacy resource to ISU students through National Endowment for Financial Education® called CashCourse.