Posted on Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Workforce Wednesday“Beware of little expenses; a small leak will sink a great ship.” – Benjamin Franklin

Whether you are a 20-something freshman in college, an adult working on a new credential to make more money, or someone interested in training to make a career change, we all have personal finances to deal with on a daily basis.

Tanya Conover and Tyler Freeland are Virginia Financial Success Coaches in Northern Virginia and Southwest Virginia, respectively, where they help adults eligible for federal workforce services improve their finances and set them on a path to stability. Their collective coaching experience led to the development of the following list:

Common Mistakes Students (of any age) are making with their money

1. Astronomical cell phone bills. Shop around for the best deal and avoid getting trapped into contracts you can’t afford.
2. Lack of awareness about the monthly total of actual expenses vs. income, especially those that are “in the red.”
3. Not differentiating between a want versus a need.
4. Ignoring collectors. Always respond to collection agencies.
5. High interest rates. Individuals may have interest rates that are predatory, and need to be negotiated down or refinanced.
6. Holding out for a dream job or management position. Take a job that will pay the bills until you find a better job.
7. Not realizing that little changes can go a long way over time to improve financial fitness.

The Virginia Financial Success Network (VFSN) is a study in participating One-Stop Career Centers in Virginia. Under the VFSN, financial success coaches in Roanoke, Piedmont, Southside, Northern Virginia, Norfolk and Danville/Martinsville), work with clients to assess their current financial situation, set goals, develop a household budget, obtain a credit report/score, and create a long-term plan to address the family’s needs around housing, transportation, and education.

Check out THIS 3 MINUTE ORIENTATION VIDEO to learn more about the project or contact Paula Dehetre at'

Amanda Christopher

Amanda Christopher is a graduate of Hollins University and Virginia Commonwealth University. A native of the DC metro area, Amanda worked in public relations for the American Red Cross before joining the Virginia Community College System as the Workforce Communications Coordinator.

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