The first step to confident financial independence is learning to budget. This doesn’t require math skills and you can find online tools that will walk you through the process of adding up the money you will receive from all sources in an academic year and estimating the expenses you will need to prepare for. We suggest you start with Mint.
Make a budget that is realistic, on a weekly and semester basis, using tools that make sense for you – and then
Ask yourself what unexpected expenses might be likely to arise, for necessities or for things you might want to do.
Consult the Financial Resources page of the Yale College First-Generation-Low Income site, which provides information useful for all students.
Think about your own earning capacity. Work is an important part of education: what jobs might you apply for? How do you do that, and how many hours could you sensibly work, and what would you earn? Do you know what will be withheld in any pay you might receive if you work? Do you know how to learn more about taxes and work and so on?
For funding you can apply for to support significant academic and professional development activities, visit the Center for International and Professional Experience.
Money for things you might want, rather than need, to do: Funding for conference travel, for short-term volunteer projects, and for student group activities, is less often available through Yale. If there is a strong academic component, some academic departments might have funds to support you, and you can also see whether your Head of College has funding. There may also sometimes be funding available through the Cultural Centers. Most such funding is partial, so when you are making your own budget and planning ahead, planning to save money to cover such activities is wise.
Yale College Safety Net
If you face an emergency or have significant unplanned expenses, visit the Yale College Safety Net.
LIT Financial Education Program
Visit the LIT platform, developed by Yale Alum Tara Falcone ‘11.