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It’s important to speak frankly with your student about money and how much it costs to be a college student. If your student has never lived on a budget, it’s important to talk about the realities of having limited funds and how much rent, cell phones, textbooks, laundry, transportation and food can really cost. While for many of us talking about money can be uncomfortable, it is better to be up-front about what resources you have (or don’t have) available to commit to your student’s expenses so that they can appreciate your perspective. If a part-time job is needed to pay for the extras, you should discuss how many hours a week they should work so as not to take away from their studies. Talking it over as a family and agreeing on a reasonable plan can reduce tensions later. By having this conversation with your student, you are acknowledging their growth, and hopefully s/he will respond with a more careful approach to spending.

To learn more about financial support for Seneca students, visit financial aid.