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SMMC News & Events Blog
This blog highlights news, events, and informative articles on personal finance from University of Illinois System's Student Money Management Center. Feel free to navigate to different categories with the list of topics on the right or search for a specific topic next to the view all link below.

blog posts

  • Completing the FAFSA

    The Free Application for Federal Student Aid, otherwise known as FAFSA, is “the largest source of financial aid to pay for college”. Read about important dates, tips & reminders for filing.

  • Exit Counseling is Live for Institutional Student Loan Borrowers

    If you borrowed institutional loans to pay for school and are graduating or leaving school soon, don't forget to complete your Exit Counseling to avoid a transcript hold!

  • Chair with mortarboard / graduation cap hanging over the edge of the top of the chair with the words "6 Considerations for Finding Funding During COVID-19

    6 Considerations for Finding Funding During COVID-19

    Finding money for your education, especially grad school, can be more difficult now. Read the 6 considerations for finding funding during COVID-19 to learn about searching for fellowships. 

  • Setting Goals for Your Well-being

    Explore how Maslow's hierarchy of needs and the dimensions of well-being can help you set, prioritize, and manage your SMART goals.

  • Man with over the ear headphones around his neck studying on a laptop. White text reads: Student Loans

    Podcast: Student Loans

    Episode 16 of Making Cents of Money, Student Loans, lays out some student loan statistics, considerations, and protections for borrowers in preparation for our webinar on Student Loan Repayment tomorrow!

  • Podcast: Student Loan Repayment (update)

    In episode 41 of Making Cents of Money, Andrea and Nikki discuss some of the big updates on federal student loans that have occured over the past couple months.

  • IDFPR Webinars on Temporary Expanded PSLF

    IDFPR is hosting 4 webinars between now and October 30th on the temporarily expanded PSLF program for Public School Educators.

  • 2 stacks of coins with a graduation cap on one stack. Text reads Biden Student Loan Cancellation & PSLF Limited Waiver

    Biden Student Loan Cancellation & PSLF Limited Waiver

    Not all federal student loan forgiveness programs are the same. We want to draw your attention to an upcoming deadline to be aware of if you work in public service and will still have a balance after the Biden student loan cancellations are processed.

  • piggy bank with grad cap on money

    Podcast: Paying for College with Scholarships

    In episode 52 of Making Cents of Money, Nikki and Andrea talk to special guest, Kara Holloway, Director of Scholarships at UIC, about paying for college with scholarships.

  • Top of graduation cap with money and words overlaid that say "Return to Repayment UPDATE"

    Podcast: Return to Repayment (Student Loans Update)

    In episode 60 of Making Cents of Money, Andrea and Nikki talk about the current status of federal student loans and how to prepare for the return to repayment which is expected in the next few months.

  • sunset with utilities lines and white text that reads "Help with Utilities Bills"

    Podcast: Help with Utility Bills

    In episode 61 of Making Cents of Money, we learn about the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). If you're struggling to pay utilities, apply by May 31!

  • image of cash and graduation cap with "Student Loan Management" text

    Student Loan Management - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Explore methods of student loan management by watching this webinar recording from May 3, 2023.

  • Image of capital building and stethascope with white text that says "Get Covered, Illinois"

    Podcast: Get Covered, Illinois

    In episode 62 of Making Cents of Money, Brian Gorman, Director of Outreach & Engagement for Get Covered Illinois, answers our questions about managing healthcare costs.

  • Image of wooden family figurines and house with text "Help for Homeowners"

    Podcast: Help for Homeowners

    In episode 63 of Making Cents of Money, Kari Byer, Director of the APLD & Investigations, joins us to talk about programs designed to help those who may be struggling with initial and ongoing homeownership costs.

  • Calendar with date circled that says Pay Rent! next to a roll of money

    Podcast: Help for Renters

    In episode 64 of Making Cents of Money, Kari Byer, Director of the APLD & Investigations, joins us again to talk about programs designed to help find and afford renting a place to live.

  • Student Loan Updates Webinars for 2023/2024

    Our Student Loan Updates webinar series will run from July 2023 - March 2024 with 10-20 minute webinars on different topics each month.

  • Funding a College Education

    Funding your education can be a daunting task, but there are many tools to help students and their families cover the cost of a college education.

  • Decreasing Borrowing While in School

    Student loans can be a valuable tool for increasing access to higher education, but it does come with a cost. Learn how to limit those costs while in school so you decrease future costs of compounding interest.

  • Cash at College

    Webinar Recording: Cash at College

    Discover how spending, saving, and student loans impact your college experience.