Get $mart!™ is a financial literacy program brought to you by the Suffolk University Law School Office of Financial Aid
The goal of Get $mart programming is to help Suffolk Law School students manage their fiscal well-being during their student years and beyond. An investment in a legal education goes beyond time invested in the classroom. Get $mart!™ works is to provide students with a series of interactive presentations related to all things financial.
Check out these links for more resources:
- How to Prepare for Law School (pdf)
- Tips for Frugal Living from Office of Financial Aid (pdf)
- Tips for Frugal Living from Students (pdf)
- BostononBudget-Free Things to do in Boston!
- Equal Justice Works-Helping Lawyers Help Community-Student Debt Relief
- Access Assist-Various financial resources that will make it easier to manage your loans and repayment.
Do you have a suggestion for Get $mart!?™ If so, contact us with your idea.
Upcoming Get$mart! Events:Fall 2015-One on One Loan Repayment Counseling Sessions
The Office of Financial Aid will be holding one on one loan counseling appointments for students graduating in the 2015-16 academic year. Students will have the opportunity to speak with an aid professional concerning their loan obligations and payment options available.
Appointments tend to fill up quickly for these popular sessions, so please register early. Watch your Suffolk email for an announcement and registration information.
What is SALT? A Responsible Borrower Program
Suffolk University Law School has teamed up with SALT to offer a comprehensive financial literacy program, brought to you in partnership with the Office of Student Financial Assistance and American Student Assistance (ASA). After working with millions of student borrowers, American Student Assistance (ASA) combined 50+ years of knowledge and best practices into a powerful program called SALT. Today, there are 259 participating schools nationwide and over 1,000,000 active members! SALT is designed to empower students and alumni to confidently approach, manage and pay back their student loans and gain financial skills for life. SALT offers a comprehensive continuum of service from education financing through successful loan repayment.
SALT offers services built around YOU- before, during and after school:
• Well-timed, neutral financial education resources, advice, and self-paced courses designed from your point of view
• Live one-on-one counseling by trained advisers who can answer your questions objectively and advocate on your behalf
• Easy-to-use tools that help you monitor and manage your loans and payments online
• Help in finding jobs, internships and scholarships
To get started, please register at SALT Money.
Protecting Your Identity/Privacy RightsNational Resource for Identity Theft - This is the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) home page for ID theft. Links include a course of action if your identity has been stolen, consumer information, and ID theft statistics.
Take Charge: Fighting Back Against Identity Theft -The FTC has created this in-depth publication which covers all aspects of identity theft issues including your privacy rights, victim recourse, fraud, federal and state laws, and the ID theft affidavit.
Misused - The Department of Education has created this web site to help college students avoid credit card fraud and other forms of identity theft.
Privacy Rights Clearinghouse - Find out about this nonprofit organization which fosters consumer education, research and advocacy for the enforcement of privacy rights.
Identity Theft Resource Center - This is a national non-profit organization which focuses exclusively on identity theft.
Opt Out Prescreen - Here is a site where you can opt out of pre-screened credit offers for five years or permanently. You can also call 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688).
Websites for Frugal Living
Based on the Get $mart!™ session 'Tips for Frugal Living and Borrowing Less', take note of these web sites and resources to increase your ability to stretch student dollars and manage life on a budget.
Better Budgeting.com - This Ezine offers numerous links and articles all designed to help you save money across the consumer spectrum.
Fool.com - The Motley Fool site is dedicated to enhancing your financial acumen while amusing you at the same time. The information here will expand your knowledge of investments and the workings of Wall Street.
Thrifty Fun.com - Use this web page to access all topics concerned with running a thrifty and efficient household.
These additional links target savings in specific areas:
Commuter Cost Savings - This podcast is the second episode in Educational Credit Management Corporation's series on Financial Awareness Basics.
AAA.com - Cars, Travel, Insurance
Entertainment.com - Dining, Travel, Shopping, Attractions
Based on the Get $mart!™ workshop titled "Are You Credit-Wise & Credit-Safe?", explore the links below for more resources on understanding credit. The hand-outs and a video disc from this session can also be obtained from the Office of Financial Aid.AnnualCreditReport.com - This is a centralized service for consumers to request free annual credit reports. It was created by the three nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. AnnualCreditReport.com is the only service authorized by these companies for this purpose. Please note that, as a security precaution, consumers should never provide their personal information to any other company or person in connection with requesting free annual credit reports under the FACT Act. AnnualCreditReport.com will not approach consumers via email, telemarketing or direct mail solicitations.
Financial Awareness Basics - This is the first episode in a series of podcasts from Educational Credit Management Corporation that targets the importance of reviewing your credit report and how to access this information.
The Importance of Good Credit Curriculum Credit Series - This Access Group web site provides you with tutorials on Credit Basics, Credit Reporting, Credit Scoring Basics, Maximize Your Credit Score, Good Credit, Credit Cards, and Credit Repair.
Credit Education Center - This section of the myfico.com web site provides information on credit scoring and credit reporting.
Understanding Credit Scoring - Learn about the five areas of credit scoring and what you can do to improve your credit score with this free booklet.
Credit Score Estimator - F.I.C.O. and bankrate.com jointly developed this credit score estimator. Your credit score range is estimated based on answers to ten questions about credit use and payment behavior.
Your credit report only (not your credit score) can be obtained once a year free of charge by residents of certain states (including Massachusetts) from the three credit bureaus:Equifax
National Foundation for Credit Counseling - NFCC, through its Consumer Credit Counseling Service member agencies, provides credit counseling, debt reduction services, and education for financial wellness.
BudgetingFollow the links below for resources on creating and managing a student budget as well as exploring real world ideas for a successful budgeting plan.
Good Financial Habits - This primer from the Access Group will guide you in establishing personal habits that will help you meet your financial goals.
Budgeting - Another tutorial from the Access Group's site designed to help you start making conscious decisions about how and on what you spend money. Planning and sticking to a monthly budget will help you avoid piling on more debt, help you save money, and make it easier to afford the lifestyle you want after graduation.
Money Management / Financial PlanningBased on the Get $mart!™ workshop titled "Real World Financial Planning Survival Strategies," explore the link below for more resources on financial well-being and education finances as well as setting financial goals after graduation.
National Financial Planning Support Center - The Financial Planning Association (FPA) has authored this web site offering insight into a variety of pertinent topics.
Loan Repayment and ConsolidationBased on the Get $mart!™ workshop "Loan Repayment and Consolidation: Options for Managing Student Loan Debt" explore the links below for helpful information on loan repayment and consolidation and strategies to best navigate your loan repayment period.
Repaying - This Department of Education web site tells you what you need to know about repaying federal student loans.
The Smart Student Guide: Repayment Plans - The four main repayment plans for federal education loans are explained here by FinAid.org. This site also includes a number of calculators designed to help you evaluate the merits of each type of repayment plan.
The Smart Student Guide: Loan Consolidation - This overview of loan consolidation includes the basic concept and benefits of combining student loans as well as potential drawbacks and alternatives to consolidation.
Direct Loan Consolidation - This is the official web site of the Department of Education's Direct Loan Consolidation program. Specific benefits may be available to graduates pursuing careers in a number of public-service jobs.
Ask a Tax Expert
Parent and Student Guide to Federal Tax Benefits for Tuition and Fees - The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) publishes the Parent and Student Guide to Federal Tax Benefits for Tuition and Fees to provide students, parents, counselors, and others with general guidance to federal education-related tax benefits. The Guide includes basic information about the federal Hope Scholarship tax credit, the Lifetime Learning tax credit, and the Tuition and Fees Tax Deduction. More detailed information is available from the IRS links included at the end of the Guide.
www.irs.gov - This site is the official online resource for all federal tax information. You'll find a powerful internal search engine as well as all the forms issued by the IRS.
Get Car Buying $mart
Based on the Get $mart!™ session 'Get Car Buying $mart!', visit these links to take advantage of information provided by the Federal Trade Commission and other consumer agencies focused on illuminating your car buying experience.The Federal Trade Commission - This portion of the web site offers advice on purchasing a new car including selecting, negotiating, and financing your vehicle.
Facts for Consumers - This FTC page addresses concerns associated with purchasing a used vehicle such as methods of payment, inspection checklists, and warranty coverage.
FTC Consumer Alert - This Federal Trade Commission page contains more information regarding the many costs of owning a used car.
Car Ads: Reading Between the Lines - This section of the Federal Trade Commission's web site helps buyers read between the lines of car ads targeting financing and other special promotions offered by dealers.
The following links contain tools for research and comparison of new and used car models: