Learn money, earn money

The $avvy $eawolf $eries is back on UAA grounds for its 11th semester of making students more financially literate. The series consists of workshops once-a-week for three weeks that inform students on financial topics, all while giving them the chance to be entered for a scholarship.

The three different workshops are offered at the same time each week for three weeks, continuously, until the end of April for a total of 15 workshops. The first workshop, “Stretching Your Dollar,” covers the topic of budgeting: how to manage money well while in college, including tips on how to save some extra cash. The second workshop, “Credit… the Bad, the Good and the Ugly,” covers credit; learn what a credit score is and how can it potentially affect someone’s future. The third workshop, “The Loan Zone,” covers loans: the pros and cons of loans and how it affects credit.

“We encourage students to come to any workshop that they can, even if it’s just one, that’ll hopefully start the ball rolling for thinking more about smart financial choices and financial future,” Laura Zamborsky, financial literacy coordinator for UAA’s Office of Financial Aid, said.

UAA students who come to one of the three workshops, and meet certain criteria, can be entered to win a scholarship. If students complete the series by attending all three different workshops, they can be entered to win an even larger scholarship. Scholarships are eligible for use in the following semester.

“Usually students are drawn in by that possibility of a scholarship, but they end up leaving saying ‘hmm, I actually learned something, that was really good information,’” Zamborsky said.

All classes are free for students, parents and high school students who are thinking about college. Inge Bristow, one of UAA’s financial aid technicians, took the Savvy Seawolf budgeting and loan workshops, with the hope of completing the credit workshop this semester.

- Advertisement -

“There were a lot of questions that you don’t think about like, ‘what things can you budget for?’ and ‘do you really need to think about money for the future?’ And yes, you do,” Bristow said of the budget class.

Bristow said the budgeting class really helped her plan a long-term budget, instead of her normal monthly budgets and, now, she has a five-year budget that helps her keep her eyes on retirement later on.

“I’ve been in the financial aid profession for 25 years and I still managed to learn quite a bit from [Zamborsky’s] workshops,” Carrie Burford said.

Burford is UAA Financial Aid’s scholarship coordinator. She completed the series and was able to learn something about her own credit and budgeting through the workshops. She said that the credit workshop was the “most interesting,” as Zamborsky got into the meaning of credit cards’ fine print.

All workshops run one hour long. There are various times and days from the beginning of the series to the end, so if a student misses one of the three classes, they can make it up by attending one at a later time. Locations of the classes vary as well, locations include the Lyla Richards Conference Room in the Student Union, the University Center, Gorsuch Commons and Rasmuson Hall. Search for Savvy Seawolf on UAA’s website for the full calendar of workshops, dates, locations and times.

“We want to encourage to make smart financial choices, and we want to be aware the choices they’re making now are going to affect them in the future,” Zamborsky said.

The first class of spring semester 2019 starts Tuesday, Jan. 29 at 6 p.m. at the University Center in room 114.