College Budgeting / By Ayana Fairly
According to Caitlin Soard in the article, “How Much Do American Teens Spend on Clothes?” teen annual spending is $8,008 on average on shoes and clothes combined. That’s money that if saved can be put towards a full semester of tuition at the college of your choice. While clothes are in no way trivial, it should not be a priority for teens to purchase the most expensive clothing. According to the College Board as cited by CollegeData. com, the typical cost of a moderately priced public, instate college is $25,290. The money that’s spent annually for shoes and clothes could instead be saved for college Sasha Villagrana, staff member at Lindblom Math and Science Academy, said that she had to take out $76,000 in student loans in 2009. Villagrana has paid off $30,000 in student loans and still has to pay $46,000 to this day. That is money that Villagrana could have used for other necessities such as buying a car or saving for a house. On the other hand, there is Alison Eichhorn, a teacher in the history department at Lindblom Math and Science Academy, who obtained a full-ride scholarship to Loyola University. Since Eichhorn was on a full-ride scholarship, she was able to save up to take a trip to New York. For those students who decide that college isn’t the right fit for them, it also does not mean that saving right now doesn’t apply to them. It behooves you to save your money for necessities in the future; name brand clothes aren’t a necessity. The knowledge you gain from college lasts much longer and creates an opportunity to broaden your future. Buying name brand clothes gives big corporations more money. Rather than making the rich richer, invest money in yourself. You don’t have to save all of your money, because you’re a teen after all (and McDonald’s is way too appealing), but save a portion (20-30%) of your money for your future career and house.