Even if students haven’t gotten their refund checks yet, many already have plans to use the money, some in more responsible ways than others.
“I plan on spending the money on rent, cost of living, food, stuff like that, said Kaitlyn Baswell, a theater freshman who expects a check later this semester. “I am sure you could use it to go shopping or something like that, but I guess it depends on how responsible you are. You’re going to have to pay [your student loans] back anyways. I’m just basically reimbursing myself and then spending what’s left on the cost of living.”
Comptroller John Braungard has been working in areas dealing directly with students and their financial aid for over 12 years. “I think that the majority of our students are using their financial aid refunds to pay for living expenses such as housing costs, food, and transportation costs,” said Braungard when asked via email what he thinks students are doing with their refund checks.
Students have the choice to do what they please with the money, although administration advises that they invest it into their degrees and living expenses during the semester. When asked what he recommends students doing with their refunds, John Braungard responded via email, “I would recommend students only borrow as much as they need and try to limit the use of their refunds for essential expenses.”
Psychology sophomore Haillie Luft is doing just that. She said, “I used the money to pay back the person who gave me the money for the first semester.”
Other students like Toni Dipalma, a freshman in adolescent education, have other thoughts on what to do with the money. “Ideally, I would like to buy myself a plane ticket anywhere for spring break or something. There’s a much more responsible way to spend the money, but I just think I deserve it,” said Dipalma.
Refunds are distributed in payments from January to March for the spring semester and August to November for the fall semester. Students are sent a Higher One Refund choice card or a check in the mail to receive their refunds or are able to get the money direct-deposited into their bank accounts.