Today's college students came of age during the Great Recession, which scared them into actively managing their money and being more involved in their financial futures.
Most investors have admitted that the financial crisis was a boon as it forced them to significantly change their financial mindset and behaviors for the better — and America’s youth might agree. They, also, got a wake up call after living through the challenges of the recession.
According to a survey by Citi and Seventeen Magazine, college students and high school seniors are taking an active role in their financial futures. In fact, a majority are using their own money for a number of college expenses.
Nearly four out of five college students are working while attending school and 77% say they pay their credit card bills, while 62% say they have set a budget to keep track of their own expenses.
"Having come of age during the Great Recession, many of today's students have experienced a financial wake-up call that's prompting them to seek ways to take control of their financial future while they're still in school," Linda Descano, CFA, managing director and head of Content and Social for North America Marketing at Citi, and president and chief executive officer of Citi's Women & Co, said in a statement.
Money-related issues are the biggest concerns while in school, while 61% admitted that college is more expensive than they thought it would be. The biggest concern, though, is getting a good-paying job after graduation (63%), although half (53%) worry about paying tuition bills and 47% are concerned about the amount of student loan debt they owe.
"This generation is smarter than ever about making and managing their money," Ann Shoket, editor in chief of Seventeen, said in a statement. "The responsibility they take on in college is setting them up for a strong financial future."
Largely, money plays an important role in the college students choose to apply to and attend with one-third saying that money was the single most important determining factor for enrollment.
However, at the end of the day, 94% of the respondents believe that college will end up being a good investment.
"This study has given us a glimpse into how students are balancing the responsibilities of work, studies and their finances to achieve success — and has provided us with the insights that we need to offer financial and professional resources that help them progress towards their goals," Descano said.