Southern University’s cashier’s office recently sent out the first round of refund checks to students this week causing some students to have immense relief and happiness at having more money in their bank accounts. However, with new money, comes new responsibility and new questions, such as how students, who do not already have a plan, should spend their refund checks. Listed below are ten ideas for how students can spend their refunds check to improve their future.

1. Invest in the stock market- For students who are willing to keep up with industries’ financial states, investing in the stock market may be a great way to make money, especially with a return rate of 9.2% for ten years according to Goldman Sachs data.

2. Save it for a rainy day/ Let it collect interest -You never know when life is going to “catch you slipping,” so it is good to have available funds when you need them. Additionally, depending on your bank, you may be able to collect interest on the money in your savings account.

3. Invest in your future- If you have a business, need to improve at a skill, or need to buy study materials for upcoming graduate tests, your refund money may be better used for this. By investing in your future today, you should make even more money tomorrow.

4. Save it to use towards graduate or professional school- Post-secondary educations are costly and can add up. Start saving today for your future plans.

5. Focus on your health- It is important to set and reach long term health goals, so be sure to consider investing money back into yourself. This may mean hiring a personal trainer or attending therapy sessions.

6. Pay off any debt- Having school and credit card loans can lessen the financial stress you feel. With high interest rates, it is important to pay off debt as quickly as possible.

7. Improve your school experience- Pay your rent, decorate your living space, purchase a car or make a car payment, purchase school supplies, or hire a tutor. These are all ways you can use your refund check to make your school experience more convenient.

8. Get better insurance- You want to know how to increase your net worth? Have better life insurance.

Now that you know your options, if you are still uncertain on how to spend your refund, talking to your peers may be a great way to decide. Nadia Spencer, a freshman from Alabama, said several of her friends made the deliberate decision to spend their refund check by investing back in their small businesses. Freshmen, Lakambre Williams and Kaya Washington plan on saving up for a car with their refund checks.

Discussing your options with friends may give you a better understanding on what is best for your future. Whatever you decide to do with your refund check, be intentional, think reasonably, and make your future self proud. Financial skills can last a lifetime. Spend responsibly.

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