blog navigation

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

  • 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.

  • Factors Influencing Financial Knowledge

    This article highlights some of the factors that influence financial knowledge, factors that affect one's appreciation of financial concepts, habits, and decisions.

  • Fall 2019 Understand Your Refund Quiz

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund.

    Learn how to avoid being one of them.

  • Sky with clouds above Illini Union roof at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign with text: Job Opening for UIUC Grad Student

    SMMC Grad Hourly Job Openings at UIUC

    Are you looking for an opportunity to enhance your professional skills while in school as well as your knowledge of personal finance? University Bursar's Student Money Management Center has two job openings at Urbana!

    Apply to be an SMMC Support Specialist!

  • 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.

  • woman drinking coffee and smiling at a computer with her hand in the air

    Understand Your Refund - Fall 2021

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund. Learn how to avoid being one of them.

  • Sky with clouds above Illini Union roof at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign with text: Job Opening for UIUC Grad Student

    SMMC Grad Hourly Job Opening at UIUC

    Are you looking for an opportunity to enhance your professional skills while in school as well as your knowledge of personal finance? University Bursar's Student Money Management Center has an open position at Urbana!

    Apply to be an SMMC Support Specialist!

  • woman drinking coffee and smiling at a computer with her hand in the air

    Understand Your Refund - Fall 2020

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund.

    Learn how to avoid being one of them.

  • Tax Filing 101: Forms & Facts You Need to Know

    As we get closer to the tax filing deadline for the United States, it is important to knwo the intricacies and important forms for filing taxes.

  • How to Add Digital Badges to LinkedIn

    If you have a digital badge from the University of Illinois Digital Badges Program, you may have noticed that there's a new backpack system to use. Since the transition from Mozilla Backpack to Badgr Backpack, there's a new way to create collections that can be placed on LinkedIn. 

    We created a tutorial to help you display your badges on LinkedIn after you've transitioned to using Badgr.

  • Defeat the Debt Monster

    Students across the University of Illinois System are needed to Defeat the Debt Monster between October 1 – October 29 for a chance to win one of three $25 gift cards.

    Discover ways to defeat your personal debt monster!

  • Two silhouetted people standing in front of a sunrise.

    Seasonal Themes: Get More Done with a Mindset Shift

    Has Your New Year's Resolution Failed? Try a Seasonal Theme!

  • Collection of Several Hundred Dollar Bill Bundles in US Currency

    How do people with vision impairments manage money?

    Vision impairments can complicate how people manage their money. Learn about ways that people with reduced vision or blindness can be empowered to navigate finances on their own.

  • Overcoming Spending Temptations

    Get some idea starters on how to overcome spending temptations, just in time for the shopping season! 

  • Hand pulling tissue out of box

    Shrinkflation

    As we get ready for our first Get Savvy webinar of fall 2022, Inflation: When Prices Rise, we wanted to share a little bit about shrinkflation - what it is and how to cope with it as a consumer.

  • Coronavirus Challenges Our Financial Security with Image of Empty Wallet

    Coronavirus Challenges Our Financial Security

    We have defined a few financial terms to make it easier to stay up-to-date on how COVID-19 is impacting our finances.

  • Pointer finger with tiny graduation cap on it

    Know What You Owe Challenge - Spring 2023

    About half of students at the University of Illinois take out loans to fund their degrees. Make sure you're not surprised by the amount of student loans you have taken out when you graduate by taking the Know What You Owe Challenge which runs April 1 - May 1, 2023.

  • SMMC Grad Hourly Job Openings at UIUC

    Are you looking for an opportunity to enhance your professional skills while in school as well as your knowledge of personal finance? University Bursar's Student Money Management Center has two job openings at Urbana!

    Apply to be an SMMC Support Specialist!

  • Good Food, Good Mood

    Is having to find consistent, affordable food always putting you in a bad mood?  Read our article about ways to fight food insecurity to learn of resources that can help.

  • Breaking a Rental Lease in Illinois

    Kwabena Sarfo Adjei, SMMC Support Specialist and LLM student at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign's College of Law, describes how he was able to get out of his rental lease after finding the rental property did not meet his expectations.

  • Mobile Wallets: Know the Risks & Rewards

    Mobile wallets are a digital way to keep your financial tools and resources in your mobile device. Learn more about the risks & rewards of mobile wallets so you can best protect your hard-earned money.

  • Identifying Expenses: Fixed, Flexible, or Occasional?

    If you're looking for a better understanding of how to categorize expenses in your budget or spending plan, explore the differences between fixed, flexible, and occassional costs.

  • Pair of glasses with "Focus Your spending with Lists" laid over the image

    Focus Your Spending with Lists

    Lists are helpful for all kinds of things, but how can they help you focus your spending?

  • Know What You Owe Challenge - Fall 2023

    About half of students at the University of Illinois take out loans to fund their degrees. Make sure you're not surprised by the amount of student loans you have taken out when you graduate by taking the Know What You Owe Challenge which runs November 14 - December 15, 2023.

  • woman drinking coffee and smiling at a computer with her hand in the air

    Understand Your Refund - Spring 2021

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund. Learn how to avoid being one of them.

  • Virtual Financial Education title over woman sitting cross-legged with laptop

    Virtual Financial Education

    We put together a list of ways you can enhance your financial knowledge through virtual means as well as a few tips if you're teaching online for the first time.

  • International Student Financial Wellness Survey

    The University of Illinois Student Money Management Center developed a survey specifically for international students to learn about your unique financial struggles and habits because of how important you are to the community and enriching diversity for all three of our universities in the University of Illinois System. 

  • Top Tips for Tax-Filing

  • 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.

  • Sky with clouds above Illini Union roof at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign with text: Job Opening for UIUC Grad Student

    SMMC Grad Hourly Job Opening at UIUC

    Are you looking for an opportunity to enhance your professional skills while in school as well as your knowledge of personal finance? University Bursar's Student Money Management Center has an open position at Urbana!

    Apply to be an SMMC Support Specialist!

  • Changes to Financial Coaching

    We're restructuring our services to better meet the needs of our stakeholders: students, their families, and employees across the University of Illinois System. Read about what that means for financial coaching!

  • Image of hand between domino-style blocks - some standing up, others already laying down

    Practicing Self-Advocacy in Your Financial, Professional and Social Life

    Self-advocacy is an important skill to practice, particularly right now. Whether it's getting the resources you need to succeed in school or setting boundaries with your loved ones so you can focus on your own well-being, it's important to communicate with others about your needs, wants, and struggles throughout your life.

  • woman drinking coffee and smiling at a computer with her hand in the air

    Understand Your Refund - Fall 2022

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund. Learn how to avoid being one of them.

  • Financial Socialization and Influences of K-12 Financial Education on Adult Financial Decisions

    Financial socialization, as well as formal financial education in the early stages of life, do influence adult attitudes, habits, and decisions concerning money. Looking at what state legislation exists in promoting K-12 financial education as well as resources for policymakers and parents in providing spaces for early exposure to financial education may help.

  • 4 college students studying at a table together

    Podcast: Saving for College with a 529 Savings Plan

    Episode 11 of Making Cents of Money, Saving for College with a 529 Savings Plan, explored 529 plans, including how they function, a bit on their history, and how they differ from other savings vehicles. Listen to special guests, Fernando Diaz and John Mitchell, from the Illinois Treasurer's Office to learn more about options in Illinois.

  • Get $avvy - Grow Your Green $tuff Webinar Series

    The 2018-2019 Get Savvy: Grow Your Green Stuff annual webinar series schedule is out. Register today and #GetSavvy.

  • Screenshot of google map for financial institutions created by SMMC with white text: Financial Institutions Map

    Banking Locations Near Each University

    Looking for a financial institution on campus? Explore our Google Map for locations on or close to each campus in the University of Illinois System.

  • Person doing yoga on a beach

    The 5 C's: A Guide to Self-Care on a Budget

    We put together a few tips in an effort to add to your ideas and/or motivate you to start practicing self-care/self-love on a budget! 

  • Wellness While Virtual Title over smoothie and fruit ingredients

    How to Support Wellness While Virtual

    Learn ways to enhance your overall wellness in a virtual environment. 

  • Pointer finger with tiny graduation cap on it

    Know What You Owe Challenge - Fall 2021

    About half of students at the University of Illinois take out loans to fund their degrees. Make sure you're not surprised by the amount of student loans you have taken out when you graduate by taking the Know What You Owe Challenge which runs November 15 - December 15, 2021.

  • woman drinking coffee and smiling at a computer with her hand in the air

    Understand Your Refund - Spring 2023

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund. Learn how to avoid being one of them.

  • Pointer finger with tiny graduation cap on it

    Know What You Owe Challenge

    About half of students at the University of Illinois take out loans to fund their degrees. Make sure you're not surprised by the amount of student loans you have taken out when you graduate by taking the Know What You Owe Challenge which runs April 1 - May 1, 2021.

  • Top 5 Financial Reminders for International Students

    Tuition & fees will be due before you know it, so here are the top 5 financial reminders for International Students.

  • How I Avoided a Phone Call Scam in My First Week in the United States

    This article is meant to put people, particularly first-time travellers in the United States (US), on alert on the activities of phone call scammers. 

  • Understand Your Refund Challenge - Spring 2020

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund.

    Learn how to avoid being one of them.

  • ESG: Investing in Values to Make the World a Better Place

    Investing has become more than just seeking financial returns. It can be a means to support organizations, projects, and companies that align with your values. Read on to learn more about ESG and what it means to consumer influence.

  • Know What You Owe Challenge

    Over half of students at the University of Illinois take out loans to fund their degrees. Make sure you're not surprised by the amount of student loans you have taken out when you graduate by taking the Know What You Owe Challenge.

  • Know What You Owe Challenge - Spring 2024

    About half of students at the University of Illinois take out loans to fund their degrees. Make sure you're not surprised by the amount of student loans you have taken out when you graduate by taking the Know What You Owe Challenge which runs April 1 - May 1, 2024.

  • Crow

    Friday the 13th! Financial Planning to Avoid Unlucky Losses

    Friday the 13th is often considered an unlucky day, but let's talk about how to improve your luck with personal finance!

  • woman drinking coffee and smiling at a computer with her hand in the air

    Understand Your Refund - Fall 2023

    Hundreds of students end up unable to register every semester because they owe money back to the university, even after receiving a refund. Learn how to avoid being one of them.