Financial Aid

Financial Literacy

Western Connecticut State University is committed to helping students gain knowledge and access to resources to make the best financial decisions for themselves.

The following financial literacy information helps students understand basic personal finance concepts and other helpful tools to practice good financial habits for future financial success.


We understand that making choices about paying for college is often the first major financial decision that young adults will make. Learn more about financial aid and how to be a responsible consumer from Federal Student Aid.

How Financial Aid Works

Types of Financial Aid

Who is My Student Loan Servicer?

Repaying your Student Loansopens PDF file

Steps to Avoid Student Loan Default

Prepare Now for your First Student Loan Payment (Citizens Bank)

Financial Awareness Counseling – you’ll need your FSA ID

Pamphlet: Guidance from Federal Student Aidopens PDF file

Video: How to Find Free Money for College (Sallie Mae)

Video: Responsible Borrowing

Video: Student Loan Repayment Options

Tool: Federal Student Aid Loan Simulator


The first step in creating a budget is to identify how budgeting can help you. There are many personal reasons someone creates a budget. Some common, overarching benefits of budgeting include:

  • Meet your expenses and creates a plan to reach financial goals
  • Create a framework for short and long term goals
  • Develop a sense of control over your money

Start by making your own list of personal reasons for creating a budget. Ask yourself – Are my expenses more than my income? How can I earn more income? Am I building my savings? Here are some helpful tips to get you started.

Budgeting in College (Best Colleges)

9 Steps to Better Budgeting (SoFi)

Fun Ways to Save Money (SoFi)

Quiz: Savings Tips for your Personality (Citizens)

Worksheet: Weekly Spending Trackeropens PDF file (printable)  |  Weekly Spending Trackeropens PDF file (fillable; best in Google Chrome)

Workbook: The Art of Budgetingopens PDF file (InCharge Debt Solutions)

Budgeting Apps Examples: Mint; Good Budget


An individual’s credit history is a list of transactions on a credit report. A credit report shows lenders, landlords, employers, and retailers how financially successful you have been in the past in terms of repaying your debts.

The three most popular credit reports are compiled by Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. Learn more about these credit bureaus.

Understanding Creditopens PDF file (Sallie Mae)

What is a Credit Score? (NerdWallet)

What is a FICO Score? (Business Insider)

Benefits of Having a Good Credit Score (The Balance)

How Do I Start to Build Credit? (NerdWallet)

Store Credits Cards – Ok or Scam? (Citizens)

How Do Student Loans Affect your Credit Score? (SoFi)

The Side Effects of Bad Credit (The Balance)

Video: How a FICO Score is Determined (Econ LowDown)

Tool: Credit Card Interest Calculator – How much interest will you pay? (SoFi)

Workbook: Credit Cardsopens PDF file (InCharge Debt Solutions)


Federal Student Aid – Learn more about federal grants and loans including types of federal aid, loan repayment plans, and loan forgiveness options.

Cash Course – Offers a variety of information to assist student in becoming financially informed with topics including building money management skills and managing debt.

College Bound Citizens – Resource provided by Citizens Planning for College

CT Dollars & Sense – Financial Literacy portal by CHESLA and CHET for assisting Connecticut students.

Paying for College – Resource provided by Sallie Mae to assist families with planning for college.

Sallie Mae Scholarship Search – Resource provided by Sallie Mae

SoFi Learn – Resource provided by SoFi including money matters, tools, and calculators.

SoFi Scholarship Search Tool – Resource provided by SoFi


The information provided in this section serves as a resource to students.
WCSU does not promote any specific company, product, or service.



Updated: 11/30/23