The University of Kentucky launched a set of programs and events on topics of student financial management skills as part of its larger Student Success initiative 2013-2015. The project includes activities and modules for first-year students and especially for graduate students who will in turn educate and guide undergraduates. Special emphasis is placed on first-generation undergraduate and graduate students.
Project plan and activities:
Potential students and parents have access to a newly developed online module about financial smarts for incoming students, which is also used in floor meetings by RA’s with first year students.
This project also created a required online module and live discussion for University-wide TA Orientation, “Understanding Undergraduate Student Financial Issues,” to prepare new TA’s to deal with students in financial distress. Also available is an online module for Directors of Graduate Studies, Directors of Undergraduate Studies, and TA Developers, titled “Advising Students in Tough Financial Circumstances.”
A Financial Resources website was developed through a partnership with the Senior Vice Provost for Student Success and the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education as part of the University’s Student Success web initiative.
Activities targeted for advanced undergraduate and graduate students included a series of live workshops and online video resources on financial management, developed through partnership with the local University of Kentucky Federal Credit Union, local office of TIAA-CREF, Departments of Business Administration and Family Sciences, and the Stuckert Career Center. Students can also watch a series of YouTube digital shorts, made in collaboration with the student standup comics of the “Cat’s Den.” These are peer-to-peer 3-minute comic online videos that are aimed at sophomores, juniors, 5th years, master’s and doctoral students.
This program leverages the current Managing in Tough Times (MITT) program in the University of Kentucky Agricultural Extension Service to create a life-skills simulation event for advanced undergraduate and graduate students.
Graduate students are able to take a one-credit course, “The Undergraduate Student of the 21st Century,” in the Preparing Future Faculty program, to include units on financial aid, issues in money management, and family stress. This course helps graduate students gain knowledge on current issues today’s undergraduate students face and help them become better equipped as future faculty.
More information on the project can be found here.