Game Plan for Alleviating Financial Stress in College

There are many reasons college can be stressful for students. Entering freshmen might suffer a culture shock or fear their heightened level of independence. College sophomores have the stress of picking their academic path that should set the pace for the rest of college and their career after school. With their general classes behind them, college juniors go on to higher-level classes and get heftier workloads. Seniors start getting a taste of the real world as interns and student aids, while having the most difficult classes yet. And this is for the traditional student who has remained on-track to graduation. Due to any number of circumstances, many students’ college career will continue over five or six years.

College students are confronted with many social, emotional, and academic stressors, but according to a new study, the number one stress causing area in a college student’s life is financial. The Inceptia survey recently concluded the top five reasons college students feel stress are:

      • Need to repay loans
      • Cost of education
      • Borrowing money for college
      • Need to find a job after school
      • Academic challenge of course work


It’s no surprise that college students aren’t exempt from the pressures of a bad economy. In fact, nearly half of young adults between 18 and 24 are unemployed, making finances tight and a worry at a young age. For college students, financial worries are about more than the balance on their bank account. The Inceptia study also found one in three students say money is poorly effecting their grades and one in four say their finances have required them to cut classes from their courseload.

Until there are more jobs, there is only so much students can do to save money for college and make money while they’re students. However, the stressors, like Need to repay loans, Cost of education, and Borrowing money for college, are all things that students can prepare for and have control over.

LifeBound’s book Dollars & Sense: How to Be Smart About Money addresses the common financial questions, pitfalls, and successes that every teen needs to know about before heading to college or into the world of work. Dollars & Sense answers questions like:

        • What’s the difference between a want and a need?
        • How can I save now to be prepared for tomorrow?
        • What student loan is right for me?
        • Can I afford my dream college?
        • How long will it take me to pay back my student loans?


Many students go to college, sign up for loans, and are shocked when they get the bill. Preparing and taking preventative financial measures can help students avoid many of the top financial worries they have for college and the future. Read the NACADA review of Dollars & Sense to find out how you can use this book for both high school and college students.


“Back to School: Top Five Things That Stress College Students,” by Dan Kadlec. 31 July 2012.


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