Victoria M. – Carson High School

                         THINK.TANK. CHALLENGE

As a teenager, I’ve never really had much knowledge when it came to credit, saving, and investments. Before the financial workshop, I thought that credit was just money that you can use now and pay back when you have enough money. With this being said, I didn’t see much use of savings if you can use credit to purchase anything. I always felt that it was my parents’ responsibilities when it came to finance, not mine. As a result of the think tank challenge workshop and tips, I learned that this in fact is not true. In addition, I learned the importance of taking action when it comes to saving money, credit, and loans.

During the workshop, something that stood out to me the most was the different ways one can save money. Being a soon to be college-bound student I found this topic to be very helpful. We were given cheaper alternatives that I found very impressive. For instance, in college, instead of buying new textbooks, I can rent used textbooks and sell last semester’s books back. Being someone who loves to eat, I also found that I should limit the number of times that I eat monthly. A better alternative would be to plan meals with friends in order to split the cost of groceries. Instead of using a car to get to class, I learned that a cheaper alternative is walking or using a bike. Another advantage to this is that I will also be getting my daily exercise to ensure I stay healthy and fit in college.

In addition, I also found the topic of credit very significant to a soon to be college student. I learned that it is important to always pay off your credit card because having a bad credit score is not good. Having a good credit score is needed when taking any type of loan including student loans which is how most students decide to pay for college expenses. Only charging what you can afford on your credit card will save you the stress of being in debt. In addition, I learned that if I decide to own a credit card, I should always pay my balance monthly. If things get too complicated and stressful, I also acquired the fact that you shouldn’t be afraid to cancel any credit card, it save you from many troubles.

With the knowledge I gained throughout the think tank challenge workshop its online tips I now know how to take action when it comes to financial topics. I will do everything I can to find cheaper alternatives in college and in the future to ensure that I use my money wisely and not spend it on unnecessary things. Saving money will allow me to use my money for important things such as paying my bills. Being a student, it is sometimes difficult to carry a lot of cash around so I will take in consideration of getting a credit card. When I obtain a credit card I will make sure to always have it paid off so I don’t end up in debt and a bad credit score. With the financial tips from the think tank challenge, I feel more comfortable when dealing with money and the decisions that come with it.