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SMMC News & Events Blog
This blog highlights news, events, and informative articles on personal finance from University of Illinois System's Student Money Management Center. Feel free to navigate to different categories with the list of topics on the right or search for a specific topic next to the view all link below.

blog posts

  • Tax Filing 101: Forms & Facts You Need to Know

    As we get closer to the tax filing deadline for the United States, it is important to knwo the intricacies and important forms for filing taxes.

  • Image of cat in background with "Memes & Money: What are the Facts?" text overlaid

    Memes & Money: What are the Facts? - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Learn about money memes, digital assets, and more by watching this webinar recording from January 25, 2023.

  • Wealth Building as a Balancing Act text over image of hand holding a balanced scale

    Podcast: Wealth Building as a Balancing Act

    In episode 55 of Making Cents of Money, Donovan Sanchez from University of Illinois' Financial Planning program talks about wealth building as a balancing act.

  • Spend Less, Travel More - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Learn about how to spend less to travel more by watching this webinar recording from December 7, 2022.

  • Quote from Oprah Winfrey: “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”

    Gratitude & Personal Finances

    There are so many things to be grateful for in this life. As we go into the holiday season, in this article we will discuss about how gratitude impacts our finances. 

  • Inflation: When Prices Rise - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Learn about how inflation impacts individual consumers by watching this webinar recording from September 28 2022.

  • Hand pulling tissue out of box


    As we get ready for our first Get Savvy webinar of fall 2022, Inflation: When Prices Rise, we wanted to share a little bit about shrinkflation - what it is and how to cope with it as a consumer.

  • Chicago skyline with "Community Reinvestment Act" as text overlay

    Podcast: The Community Reinvestment Act

    In episode 47 of Making Cents of Money, Chasse Rehwinkel joined Nikki & Andrea to discuss the Community Reinvestment Act and how it is intended to support economic equality.

  • Podcast: Selling a Home

    In episode 45 of Making Cents of Money, Andrea and Nikki discuss many aspects of selling a home so you can make more informed choices when it comes time to sell your own home.

  • Podcast: Shopping for Appliances

    In episode 44 of Making Cents of Money, Nikki and Andrea talk about shopping for appliances, and they've focused on times when it may be a surprise shopping need!

  • Student Loan Repayment - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Learn about managing student loan repayment once it restarts and the limited time PSLF waiver by watching this webinar recording from May 18, 2022.

  • Financial Literacy Around the World

    Financial education influences financial literacy and financial well-being around the world. This article highlights some statistics on financial literacy around the world, financial inclusion as well as financial resilience.

  • Podcast: Mortgages

    In episode 38 of Making Cents of Money, Renting!, Andrea, Jake, and Nikki interview IDFPR's Anti-Predatory Lending Database Director, Kari Beyer, about the ins and outs of mortgages.

  • Buying vs Renting a Home - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Explore the differences between renting & buying and what to consider when deciding what's best for your situation by watching this webinar recording from April 13, 2022.

  • Podcast: Renting!

    In episode 37 of Making Cents of Money, Renting!, Andrea, Jake, and Nikki discuss the basic steps and what to watch for when renting a place to live.

  • Podcast: Buying a Home!

    In episode 36 of Making Cents of Money, Buying a Home!, Andrea, Jake, and Nikki explain terminology, tools, and the basics steps of buying a home.

  • Podcast: Employment

    In episode 35 of Making Cents of Money, Employment, Andrea, Jake, and Nikki continue the podcast series on economic indicators by discussing metrics related to employment.

  • Podcast: Gross National Happiness

    In episode 34 of Making Cents of Money, Gross National Happiness, Jake and Nikki discuss an alternative metric to Gross Domestic Product that some countries use to help monitor the health of their economies called Gross National Happiness.

  • Podcast: Establishing a Vision for Your Life

    In episode 33 of Making Cents of Money, Establishing a Vision for Your Life, Andrea, Nikki, and Jake talk to Donovan Sanchez, CFP and instructor of financial planning at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign about making meaningful money choices that allow you to live life now and make progress towards the future.

  • Podcast: Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

    In episode 32 of Making Cents of Money, Establishing a Vision for Your Life, Andrea, Nikki, and Jake explain Gross Domestic Product as part of an ongoing mini series on economic indicators. 

  • Podcast: Financial Security and Stress

    In episode 31 of Making Cents of Money, Financial Security and Stress, Andrea, Nikki, and Jake talk about statistics related to both financial security and stress and tips to deal with them.

  • Podcast: Inflation

    In episode 30 of Making Cents of Money, Inflation, Jake, Nikki, and Andrea discuss what inflation is as one of many metrics to gauge how an economy is doing and how it impacts our spending power as consumers.

  • Conscious Consumerism - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Learn how you can align your own behaviors with your personal values and goals with this webinar recording from November 10, 2021.

  • Podcast: Choosing a Financial Professional

    In episode 25 of Making Cents of Money, Choosing a Financial Professional, Andrea, Jake, and Nikki talk to Kathy Sweedler from University of Illinois Extension about type of financial professionals, credentials, and how to choose one that best meets your needs.

  • Leveraging FinTech - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Learn about new financial technologies as well as considerations and protections that may be helpful in choosing fintech for navigating your financial journey.

  • Podcast: Cryptocurrencies

    In episode 24 of Making Cents of Money, Cryptocurrencies, Andrea, Jake, and Nikki talk to Professor Lamont Black from DePaul University about cryptocurrencies, discussing everything from the blockchain technology behind them to their utility in the world of fintech.

  • Podcast: Money Personalities & Financial Well-being

    In episode 23 of Making Cents of Money, Money Personalities & Financial Well-being, Andrea, Jake, and Nikki discuss several financial personality inventories and the CFPB's financial well-being scale as tools to better understand financial values, habits, and internal feelings around money.

  • Woman sitting in car smiling and holding up a car key

    Podcast: Buying a Car!

    In episode 22 of Making Cents of Money, Buying a Car!, Nikki, Andrea, and Jake explain the true costs of car ownership as well as the terms and tools to know about before you buy your next vehicle.

  • Podcast: Budgeting

    In episode 20 of Making Cents of Money, Budgeting, Nikki, Andrea, and Jake cover a few of the most popular budgeting (or spending plan, if you prefer) methods to help you think about building a financial plan.

  • keychain in the shape of a house with keys on it. text says "Real Estate"

    Podcast: Real Estate

    Episode 17 of Making Cents of Money, Real Estate, explains the world of real estate professions and what to consider when hiring professionals to help you buy or manage a home or other real estate property!

  • Creating Your Own Financial Education Plan

    Use this guide to identify what modules in the University of Illinois Financial Literacy Badges Program align with your financial education needs and make a learning plan for yourself!

  • Image of hand between domino-style blocks - some standing up, others already laying down

    Practicing Self-Advocacy in Your Financial, Professional and Social Life

    Self-advocacy is an important skill to practice, particularly right now. Whether it's getting the resources you need to succeed in school or setting boundaries with your loved ones so you can focus on your own well-being, it's important to communicate with others about your needs, wants, and struggles throughout your life.

  • Title slide for How to Save Money on Food with icons of groceries like milk, corn, cans, eggs, etc.

    Save Money on Food - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    At the end of a busy day, when you’re hungry and tired, do you go home knowing you’re all set to prepare a tasty, healthy dinner?  Are you happy with how much money you spend on food? Would you like to learn some tricks for eating well for less money?  If any of these questions resonate with you, then How to Save on Food is the educational opportunity for you!

  • Two silhouetted people standing in front of a sunrise.

    Seasonal Themes: Get More Done with a Mindset Shift

    Has Your New Year's Resolution Failed? Try a Seasonal Theme!

  • Pair of glasses with "Focus Your spending with Lists" laid over the image

    Focus Your Spending with Lists

    Lists are helpful for all kinds of things, but how can they help you focus your spending?

  • Overcoming Spending Temptations

    Get some idea starters on how to overcome spending temptations, just in time for the shopping season! 

  • Setting Goals for Your Well-being

    Explore how Maslow's hierarchy of needs and the dimensions of well-being can help you set, prioritize, and manage your SMART goals.

  • Budget Hacks Presentation Title Slide with brain icon

    Budget Hacks - Get Savvy Webinar Recording

    Money can be messy - it's not just about numbers, calculators and excel sheets. If you're looking for new ways to manage your money mess, we have the budget hacks for you! Learn how to take what we know about human behavior and choices to build better financial habits.

  • Podcast: Technology and Your Money

    Episode 3 of Making Cents of Money, Technology and Your Money, explores how financial technologies are evolving and what that means for keeping our money safe.

  • Empty grocery store shelves

    Food Insecurity Takes on New Meaning in 2020

    As Hunger Action Month comes to a close, we're reflect on how food insecurity has looked different in 2020 than in previous years. 

  • Podcast: Banked or Unbanked - Choosing Financial Services for You

    Episode 2 of Making Cents of Money, Banked or Unbanked - Choosing Financial Services for You, is all about defining unbanked/underbanked, the differences between banks & credit unions, and how to choose the right financial institution for you. Learn from Illinois' Director of Banking, Chasse Rehwinkel, and Director of Financial Institutions, Francisco Menchaca.

  • Person doing yoga on a beach

    The 5 C's: A Guide to Self-Care on a Budget

    We put together a few tips in an effort to add to your ideas and/or motivate you to start practicing self-care/self-love on a budget! 

  • Collection of Several Hundred Dollar Bill Bundles in US Currency

    How do people with vision impairments manage money?

    Vision impairments can complicate how people manage their money. Learn about ways that people with reduced vision or blindness can be empowered to navigate finances on their own.

  • Top 5 Financial Reminders for International Students

    Tuition & fees will be due before you know it, so here are the top 5 financial reminders for International Students.

  • How to Support Small Businesses During COVID-19

    Here are ways you can help support small businesses during COVID-19.

  • Crow

    Friday the 13th! Financial Planning to Avoid Unlucky Losses

    Friday the 13th is often considered an unlucky day, but let's talk about how to improve your luck with personal finance!

  • UISAVES Week 3: Building Financial Habits

    The reality of personal finance is that it is personal and requires behavior change. Learn ways to make behavior changes easier to accomplish your goals.

  • UISAVES Week 2: Small Amounts Add Up

    An important part of building a savings habit is understanding how small amounts add up. 

  • UISAVES Week 1: Goal-setting

    A strong foundation to any financial plan are goals. Set a goal with #UISAVES to connect with resources to help.

  • Funding New Year's Festivities

    The best way to manage your finances on New Year’s Eve is to plan ahead and set a defined budget you are comfortable with. Read more tips to save while celebrating.