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New workshop aims to improve students' financial literacy


In a world that is becoming more complex when dealing with financial products and services, understanding how to properly use money is a skill needed now more than ever.

However, people were rarely taught this skill adequately, and unfortunately, this is no surprise. “The U.S. lags more than a dozen developed nations in terms of basic personal financial know-how, new research shows,” according to Money magazine.

This is disappointing because in 2008, the nation faced one of the worst financial crises in history. What makes it unacceptable is that the crisis is not the first of its kind. This traumatic event has partly to do with the lack of knowledge about money and how to maneuver the economy; both young and elderly struggle with financial literacy.

As the world advances technologically, people will begin to rely more on credit and  debit cards than on hard currency like cash, which may result in people spending money without realizing just how much.

Without future generations understanding how to save and spend money wisely as well as efficiently manage credit, there is no doubt that the United States might end up in another global catastrophe.

According to an April 2018 Forbes, “Only five states have a personal finance requirement in high school.” It is mind-boggling that many students were not taught how to create a budget and understand credit in high school. Instead, they were required to take electives such as art, music and dance in order to graduate.

Even after graduating college, many students still struggle financially because of a lack of basic financial literacy skills.

Luckily for Baruch College students who wish to turn a dollar into 10 bucks, there is a great opportunity — a new financial literacy workshop that's open to everyone. It is a new initiative that started this year and includes several components, such as workshops, one-on-one financial literacy peer advising and other financial literacy campus events.

Financial literacy is a course that first began within the SEEK program, teaching students the “ability to evaluate, plan, and effectively manage their finances in order to make prudent decisions toward reaching life goals,” as Natallia Diliberti, the program’s coordinator and a Baruch alumna, stated to The Ticker.

After teaching financial literacy to adults and high school students for almost a decade, Diliberti is excited to work on developing next steps of the same program at Baruch.

Students in the program are not only educated with a high-quality financial literacy education, but they also receive an opportunity to become peer advisers and help educate more Baruch students on campus. Additionally, they will be partnered with a professional in  finance to help them network and provide a head start for life post-college.

There will be specific workshops created solely for seniors to prepare them for managing their finances when they enter the workforce after college. In each workshop, a particular topic will be discussed, such as how to invest, budget and file taxes.

This program is in the process of becoming implemented into the First-Year Seminar curriculum to help lead incoming first-year students through the financial process and prepare them as they get older and gain more responsibility throughout their college careers and afterward.

The second financial literacy workshop will discuss budgeting and debt management for the holiday season and the new year; this will take place on Dec. 6 from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. at the Newman Vertical Campus in room 4-160. Questions can be emailed to Diliberti at natallia.diliberti@baruch.cuny.edu.

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