Financial Wellness News 1/18/22

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►Got Goals?

The New Year often brings motivation to map out new goals to accomplish this year. If you plan on jotting down a few goals, don’t forget your financial goals as well! Financial goals help you stay engaged with your positive financial habits when you create your budget, track expenses, and save.

Goals should be S.M.A.R.T

If you are unsure of how to create an attainable goal for this year, you can follow this easy SMART Goal method to get a framework. When creating a financial goal, your goal should have all 5 of the following elements.

Your goal should be:

SPECIFIC – List all of the details of your goal.

MEASURABLE – Detail the amount, how you will track progress, and how you will know when you’ve reached your goal.

ATTAINABLE – How will you reach your goal? What are the actions?

RELEVANT/REALISTIC – Why is this goal important to you? How will it add value to your life?

TIME-BOUND – When will you reach this goal?

Using the elements above, you can take your goal planning from this:

“I will save more this year”

to this:

“I will save $500 by July 31st for a weekend trip home. I’ll do this by decreasing my discretionary spending by $71 per month and moving that amount into my savings account on the 20th each month.”

The latter provides a clear framework of actions to take each month to reach your goal. What financial goals will you be creating this year?

► Read more on New Year’s financial goals here.
►Want to challenge yourself to save? Try these 3 fun savings challenges.

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►Get to know Financial Wellness

Finances are personal and unique, especially for medical students committing to schooling longer than the traditional four-year college student. At UMKC School of Medicine, we value your success and tailor financial wellness to your specific experiences. From living on campus to preparing for residency, we’ll be with you to plan every expense every step of the way.

1:1 Financial Coaching

Our main service is financial coaching that is 100% student-focused. We can help students create and stick to a spending plan, discuss using credit and paying debt, and much more. We would love to talk to you about your specific financial situation and goals and empower you to practice healthy money-management habits.

To get started, please reach out to Kristian at brennonk@umkc.edu to schedule a meeting.

Student Loan Review

It’s no secret that financial aid is confusing. Students often have many questions regarding their aid and how it affects their tuition, living expenses, and overall level of debt. We provide assistance with semester-based budgeting that accounts for student loans and additional aid. This helps students estimate expenses and ensure they take out the right level of aid for their education.

Resource Center

Looking for more information on a specific topic? Our Resource Center can provide clarity on personal finance topics that are relevant and updated often. Visit the Resource Center here.

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►Upcoming Events:

(RSVP through the Financial Wellness Center on RooGroups)

January 18th @ 4 pm – Spring Kickoff: Game and Craft Night

We’ll have a variety of classic board and card games, plus youcan decorate your own ceramic bank. Game night snacks willalso be provided to fuel the competition! Located at Jazzman’s Cafe.

January 25th @ 6 pm – FAFSA Finished

In this workshop, we’ll talk about how the FAFSA is used andwhat financial aid is available. Located at 402 Student Union

January  27th @ 6 pm – Applying for Scholarships

In this session, we’ll walk you through the UMKC GeneralScholarship Application, share tips, and discuss additionalscholarship opportunities. Located at 402 Student Union.

A message from Dean Jackson

Happy New Year to all!

New faces are filling our halls. In January, we welcomed our 14th class of anesthesia assistant students, our eighth cohort of PA students, and MD track students at both of our campuses. This year’s class is the second at the UMKC School of Medicine St. Joseph campus. And we’re not done. We look forward to interviewing prospective students for our 51st class of BA/MD students who will enter in the summer of 2022. And in the fall, we will launch a one-year MBA program in collaboration with the Bloch School of Business. The program is structured for medical students who envision a career path as a leader in health care organization strategy.

We are also celebrating the expansion of our research initiative, which has grown extramural funding by 850% in the last five years. Our research work in surgical safety (Dr. Gary Sutkin), neurosciences (Drs. Paula Nichols and John Wang), vision sciences (Drs. Peter Koulen and Karl Kador), maternal fetal health (Dr. Nihar Nayak), and health equity (Dr. Jannette Berkley Patton) is flourishing. Under the leadership of Vijay Babu Rayudu Endowed Chair, Dr. Mamta Reddy, we have initiated a new program to teach the principles and practice of quality improvement and patient safety (QIPS). Ten faculty from our clinical affiliates have been invited to be members of the inaugural class. The yearlong QIPS program will prepare faculty to provide resources and collaboration for students and other interested faculty.

After our recent curricular retreat, we prioritized the focus on innovations to our medical curriculum. Our talented BMS faculty and course directors have navigated the pandemic challenges in medical education through enhanced virtual platforms for education delivery and our clinical faculty continue to teach students, residents and fellows embarking on rotations at our affiliates.

We not only commit to educating the next generation of health care professionals, providing cutting edge clinical care, and researching new treatments, but also to fostering community and partner collaborations. The community alliances are taking center stage as faculty like Dr. Berkley Patton promote health equity by engaging a myriad of investigators on the Health Science District campus. Our steadfast focus on equity, professionalism and ethics is essential as we address health care disparities and other emerging threats to our population. We will get beyond this pandemic as we anticipate the Omicron surge to diminish over the next four to six weeks. As we enter the third year of the pandemic, we stand shoulder to shoulder with all of our colleagues who are working tirelessly and look forward to the next stage as SARS CoV-2 declines and our society gets back to a more near normal.

Mary Anne Jackson, M.D. ’78
Dean, School of Medicine

Financial Wellness News – 1/3/22

►Bills Are Here!

The first due date of the Spring 2022 semester is January 10th. To avoid holds, late fees, and a delay in class start dates, make sure you have your UMKC bill taken care of this week with these quick tips:

Check Your Budget

Ensure you are not taking out more debt than needed. List your personal and school expense for the year, and determine what income source you will need. Budget for the entire academic semester with our budget worksheet or schedule a 1:1 budget session today!

►Get the worksheet: Student Academic Year Budget

Check Your To-Do List

If you are missing any steps in the financial aid process, you’ve received emails with action items to complete. Additionally, log on to Pathway and make sure you’ve completed all outstanding items on your To-Do lists located on the right-hand side.

If you have accepted loans to cover this year’s charges, have you completed the required entrance counseling and signed the promissory note? Log onto Studentaid.gov with your FAFSA ID to ensure you’ve completed these required steps.

ALL forms of financial aid will begin disbursing to student accounts one week prior to the start of the semester (January 10th) so be sure to have all of your checklists completed by that date.

Check Your Aid Acceptance Status

Did you accept your aid? Make sure that you have accepted the aid you plan to use for this semester. Aid will be applied to your cashier’s bill first, and the excess disbursed to you. Your bill will show your balance and anticipated aid. If the “Adjusted Amount Due” is negative, then your aid is covering your bill. If it is positive, that is a balance that you either need to pay or make payment arrangements for.

►If you are not sure how to review and accept your aid, click here.

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►Get to know Financial Wellness

Finances are personal and unique, especially for medical students committing to schooling longer than the traditional four-year college student. At UMKC School of Medicine, we value your success and tailor financial wellness to your specific experiences. From living on campus to preparing for residency, we’ll be with you to plan every expense every step of the way.

1:1 Financial Coaching

Our main service is financial coaching that is 100% student-focused. We can help students create and stick to a spending plan, discuss using credit and paying debt, and much more. We would love to talk to you about your specific financial situation and goals and empower you to practice healthy money-management habits.

To get started, please reach out to Kristian at brennonk@umkc.edu to schedule a meeting.

Student Loan Review

It’s no secret that financial aid is confusing. Students often have many questions regarding their aid and how it affects their tuition, living expenses, and overall level of debt. We provide assistance with semester-based budgeting that accounts for student loans and additional aid. This helps students estimate expenses and ensure they take out the right level of aid for their education.

Resource Center

Looking for more information on a specific topic? Our Resource Center can provide clarity on personal finance topics that are relevant and updated often. Visit the Resource Center here.

Financial Wellness News 12/6/21

 5 Ways to Practice

Mindful Spending

I love the above comic strip because it so accurately describes what goes through our minds often when we are spending money! We can get sidetracked by current desires, and forgo a later financial goal if we are not consistently thinking about how we are spending our money.

Before you spend your money, are you first considering how this purchase will affect your overall financial goals?  This simple practice is called Mindful Spending. Mindful spending is a form of conscious or intentional spending. In short, it means you are considering your bigger financial picture before you make a purchase. It is important to look at the bigger financial picture to make a clearer connection between your lifestyle desires (your heart) and your brain. We spend mindfully to make sure your goals, values, and other areas of overall wellness are nurtured.

Spend mindfully to support your financial goals and values, nurture your lifestyle, and keep emotional spending in check.

Now, keeping the bigger financial picture in mind, how do we practice spending mindfully?

First, identify what is important to you. Your financial goals, your personal values, and priorities.

Plan for spending! Budgeting is never going to work if you are only planning for the necessary items in the budget like bills. Give yourself permission to spend on eating out, on entertainment with friends. Just set amounts that are still serving your goals and values, and then stick to this amount.

Can you get creative in how you spend mindfully? Maybe it is sharing a plate with a friend or eating out at places that only have those student discounts. The possibilities are endless. How can you team up with your peers to foster an environment that helps each other reach their financial goals?

Shop around! This can relate to saving money on groceries by comparing ads, it might be giving back to the local economy and investing in small businesses by shopping at mom/pop stores instead of large chains.

Finally, set yourself up for success by being aware of areas that you are tempted to overspend or misalign goals. Identify what triggers this overspending and put up safeguards to avoid that in the future. This could be emotional spending, or it could be your friends or social media influence.

Will you challenge yourself to spend mindfully this month?

►Manage money with AAMC

AAMC Financial Wellness: The AAMC has created a robust financial management dashboard specifically designed for medical students. Use this dashboard to:

  • Track Financial Health
  • Budget & Track Spending
  • Create Financial to-do’s
  • Create Financial Goals
  • Organize Student Loans
  • Utilize Resources & Calculators

Create a free account today! Visit the site here and choose UMKC as your school.

►This week @ AAMC:

Facts About Taxes
This week, you’ll learn some of the basic skills you need to make tax season as pleasurable – and profitable – as possible.

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Upcoming Events:

 

No upcoming events!

Financial Wellness News 11/16/21

 

3 Ways College Students can Finance Holiday Plans

As we count down the days to Thanksgiving and holiday breaks, it’s hard not to think about holiday spending as well. Financing the holidays can be a struggle for college students who are just trying to finance school! I’ve listed 3 tips below to get your creativity flowing when discussing with your friends about your holiday plans. Plus, scroll down for “This Week at AAMC” for even MORE frugal and fun tips.

  • Host a Friendsgiving – Gathering around the table with friends is the perfect way to spend Thanksgiving. Collectively save money by having each friend bring a homemade dish to Friendsgiving. You could even require the dish brought must be a yummy family favorite that reminds you of home.
  • Thrift your gifts – Kansas  City has thrift shops on every corner. Set a spending budget (like $5 for instance) and challenge each friend to buy one gift to swap from a thrift store. The ideas can be endless and this is a fun one you can even bring back home to try with family as well.
  • Save early for trips back home – A large number of students plan to go home for the holidays. Whether that is close by or far away, be sure to add travel expenses into your semester budgets early. Saving for travel home on the front end makes the busy holiday season (and end of the semester season) less stressful!

Want more holiday spending tips? Check out this blog.

►Manage money with AAMC

AAMC Financial Wellness: The AAMC has created a robust financial management dashboard specifically designed for medical students. Use this dashboard to:

  • Track Financial Health
  • Budget & Track Spending
  • Create Financial to-do’s
  • Create Financial Goals
  • Organize Student Loans
  • Utilize Resources & Calculators

Create a free account today! Visit the site here and choose UMKC as your school.

►This week @ AAMC:

Avoiding Surprises with Holiday Spending
Does the idea of the holiday season fill you with dread instead of joy? If you’re worried about holiday spending, you’re not alone! This week we have lots of ideas for a happy season.

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Upcoming Events:

*RSVP to all these events here: Financial Wellness Center – RooGroups (umkc.edu)

Volker Financial Wellness Events:

Financial Steps to Take at your First Job – Dec 1 @ 1 pm – 402 Student Union

Starting your first full-time job is an exciting and overwhelming experience. This workshop will provide helpful tips to set you up for financial success.

We’ll help you understand a salary and benefits package, navigate student loan repayment, and work toward big financial goals.

Alumni updates

Dr. Lynette Watkins, M.D., 94, and Dr. Emily Volk, M.D., 93

Lynnette Watkins, M.D., M.B.A., ’94, is the new president and CEO of Cooley Dickinson Health Care in Northampton, Massachusetts. A highly respected ophthalmologist, health care administrator and leader, previously served as the group chief medical officer for Baptist Health System/Tenet Healthcare in Texas. After earning her medical degree at the UMKC School of Medicine, she completed her ophthalmology residency at the Massachusetts General Bingham health system’s Mass Eye and Care.

Emily Volk, M.D., F.C.A.P., ’93, has been selected to serve as the 37th president of the College of American Pathologists. It is the world’s largest organization of board-certified pathologists with an estimated 18,000 members. Volk has been a member of the organization since 1999 and has served on the board since 2013. She is the chief medical officer for Baptist Health Floyd in New Albany, Indiana.

Health Sciences District Satellite Food Pantry needs your help

Check out our flyer

Did you know:

  • That UMKC has a Health Science District Satellite Food Pantry housed in the UMKC School of Medicine?
  • That it serves all of our UMKC Health Science professional students and undergraduate and graduate students staying at the Hospital Hill Student housing?
  • That we stock daily?
  • That we stocked and distributed more than 1,200 pounds of food in August, more than 1,400 pounds of food in September and nearly 1,600 pounds of perishable and nonperishable food in October?
  • That we have a refrigerator and a freezer to help supply healthy food items to our professional students in need?

We are seeing an increased need for our health professions students and we need your help. You can donate in the following ways:

  1. Send a monetary donation using this link to support the purchase of fresh fruit, vegetables, eggs, cheese, hummus, yogurt, guacamole and frozen fruit, vegetables, beef and turkey.
  2. Drop-off the needed food items in the Yellow UMKC Satellite Pantry Bins in each of our UMKC Health Science Buildings.  Our needs are (see attached list):   Peanut butter, protein bars, granola bars, dry pasta, microwavable meals, individually wrapped peanut butter pretzels and dried fruit and nuts, crackers, applesauce, pop top canned goods, oatmeal cups and packets, Keurig coffee and shelf stable protein drinks. We also stock hygiene items such as deodorants, feminine hygiene products and individually wrapped toilet paper.

Your support of our students is greatly appreciated!

Financial Wellness News 11/8/21

Looking for MORE
scholarship opportunities?

If you are looking for more scholarship opportunities after completing the School of Medicine scholarship application, start the hunt with the resources below.

Scholarship Resource Library – Visit our external scholarships page to view medical organizations that may have scholarships available to complete.

National Medical Fellowships – Several of their scholarships are listed weekly in the In The Know email newsletter but you can find the long list of current scholarship opportunities here. 

Scholarship Contests – Many large financial institutions like Sallie Mae and Discover host regular scholarship contests. Applications take a few minutes to complete and if the contests are monthly, you can keep reapplying! I know it sounds like a long shot, but we have recently had SOM students receive one of the larger Sallie Mae scholarships. It never hurts to apply! Click the names of the companies above to go straight to the scholarships page.

Ask Employers – Did you have a job in high school? Do your parents work for a larger company? You’d be surprised at how many companies offer scholarships for employees and employees’ dependents. Kristian will tell you that a scholarship through her dad’s company paid for a big chunk of her college degree. So, ask around!

►Manage money with AAMC

AAMC Financial Wellness: The AAMC has created a robust financial management dashboard specifically designed for medical students. Use this dashboard to:

  • Track Financial Health
  • Budget & Track Spending
  • Create Financial to-do’s
  • Create Financial Goals
  • Organize Student Loans
  • Utilize Resources & Calculators

Create a free account today! Visit the site here and choose UMKC as your school.

The winner of our AAMC Sign up contest will be notified via email this week!

►This week @ AAMC:

Investing Strategies:

A review of some tried and true investing strategies for the new investor.

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Upcoming Events:

*RSVP to all these events here: Financial Wellness Center – RooGroups (umkc.edu)

Volker Financial Wellness Events:

Know what you owe: Understanding Student Loans – 11/9 @ 3 pm Location: 402 Student Union

In this session, we’ll show you how to find your student loan totals, the interest rates, and the loan servicer. We’ll also share tips on how to lower your debt while you’re in school and how to estimate your post-graduation payments.

Applying for Scholarships Tips & Tricks – 11/10 @ 5:30 Location: 402 Student Union OR 11/19 via Zoom

n this session, we’ll walk you through the UMKC General Scholarship Application and discuss additional scholarship opportunities. We’ll also share tips from actual scholarship reviewers about how to write a great essay, pick strong references, and highlight your work and volunteer experience. Get all the information you need to get a head start on your scholarship applications!

Finding Financial Empowerment – 11/11 @ 6 pm via Zoom

Handling money doesn’t have to be stressful! Join us for a quick workshop on financial empowerment. In this session, we will teach you the key fundamentals of personal finance. Having an understanding of financial basics helps you improve your financial wellbeing and feel empowered to create the life you’d like.

 

New year, pandemic trend offer reasons for optimisim

As cases, hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 continue to trend down, we anticipate that with the coming new year SARS CoV-2 will become an endemic infection. With a combination of high vaccine coverage affording protection for most, we will hopefully no longer see the virus continue to widely circulate and cause severe disease where lockdowns, masks and/or social distancing are required. However, we know that periodic boosters may be necessary as immunity can wane and new variants could arise.

Meanwhile, our students continue with in person classwork. Our junior and senior students are in clinical clerkships and electives. And we are grateful to our clinical partners and our SOM staff and faculty for their engagement and support throughout the pandemic.

This fall, we’ve seen a successful recruitment of our 2022 physician assistant, anesthesia assistant and MD track students with upcoming interviews for our BA/MD class. During our faculty awards event at Diastole on October 28, we recognized 60 faculty who were promoted, with 14 to professor rank. We also honored six faculty who received awards in diversity and health equity (Dr. Liset Olarte Carhuaz), the Christopher Papasian, PhD, excellence in teaching award (Dr. James Wooten), the Louise E. Arnold, PhD, excellence in medical education research (Dr. Angellar Manguvo), the faculty researcher award (Dr. John Spertus), the Betty M. Drees, MD, excellence in mentoring award (Dr. Michael Wacker) and the clinical affiliate teaching award (Dr. Stacey Algren).

We also celebrated the 2021 class of top doctors recognized in the medical edition of Ingram’s magazine, where 12 of the 25 honorees selected by their peers were either our medical school alumni or our faculty. And Dr. Michael Weaver, ’77, the School of Medicine’s first African American BA/MD student received the Kansas City Medical Society Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his extraordinary career. Our research enterprise continues to grow. Our St. Joseph campus has successfully completed its first year and we look forward to graduating 110 students who will join our alumni ranks this spring, right ahead of our 50th year anniversary celebration on June 4, 2021, at the Loews Hotel in Kansas City.

All in all, we have many reasons to be optimistic as we move forward!

Mary Anne Jackson, M.D. ’78
Dean, School of Medicine

Financial Wellness News 10/18/21

Apply for 2022-2023 Scholarships

Did you hear?  The 2022-2023 Scholarship Applications are here! Read on to find out how to apply and what you are eligible for based on your program and year of school.

For Years 1 & 2 Students in 2022-2023:

Students in these years of the program for the 2022-2023 school year are not eligible for additional School of Medicine scholarships.

Students are eligible for any of the general UMKC competitive scholarships. Be sure to visit umkc.academicworks.com and complete the general UMKC application and any additional prompted applications you may be eligible for.

For Years 3-6, MD, PA, & AA Students in 2022-2023:

The School of Medicine is pleased to offer students in the MD, AA, PA, and BA/MD 3-6 programs the chance to be awarded a scholarship from the School of Medicine for the 2022-2023 academic year. Scholarships are each in the amount of $5000.

To apply visit umkc.academicworks.com and complete the UMKC General Application and the prompted School of Medicine Scholarship Application. You must complete both applications to be eligible. The deadline to apply is March 1, 2022. 

Applications are reviewed and decisions are made in late Spring 2022.

If you have questions, please reach out to your Financial Wellness Counselor: Kristian Brennon at brennokn@umkc.edu.

►You don’t want to miss this event!

The day is drawing closer to our 1st Annual Create a Savings Jar Event!!

Take time away from your studies to focus on your financial goals by creating your own Savings Jar. This event is going to be a creative and relaxing experience to provide students with an opportunity to bring their financial goals to life. Participants will be provided with a jar and crafting supplies, however, feel free to bring your own embellishments! Light snacks, music, and FUN are provided as well!

Not into crafting? Don’t need a jar? You can still register to pick up a printed Savings Challenge handout to encourage and track your savings goals.

Register for the date that best fits your schedule. Space is limited.

RSVP for Nov 2 @ 11:30

RSVP for Nov 4 @ 2:00

►Sign up for AAMC, Win a Prize!

AAMC Financial Wellness: The AAMC has created a robust financial management dashboard specifically designed for medical students. Use this dashboard to:

  • Track Financial Health
  • Budget & Track Spending
  • Create Financial to-do’s
  • Create Financial Goals
  • Organize Student Loans
  • Utilize Resources & Calculators

Create a free account today! Visit the site here and choose UMKC as your school.

ANYONE who signs up for AAMC Financial Wellness and creates a budget by October 31 will be entered into a drawing for a prize! 

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Upcoming Events:

*RSVP to all these events here: Financial Wellness Center – RooGroups (umkc.edu)

SOM Events:

Nov 2nd or 4th – Create a Savings Jar: Bring your financial goals and creative hands to create your own Savings Jar. Whether it is saving for a specific goal or taking the challenge to save more, this event provides a relaxing break from coursework to focus on their financial goals in a creative manner. SOM 4th floor @ 11:30 or 2 PM (depending on the day you register for)

Volker Financial Wellness Events:

Oct 20th – Filing your FAFSA: Join us for this FAFSA Kickoff Workshop! In this workshop, we’ll talk about how the FAFSA is used and what financial aid is available. We’ll also answer common FAFSA-related questions. ZOOM @ 6 pm

Oct 26th – Understanding Student Loan Repayment: We’ll show you how to find your student loan totals, interest rates, and loan servicer. We’ll also share tips on how to lower your debt while you’re in school and how to estimate your post-graduation payments. ZOOM @ 6pm

Oct 28th – Mythbusters Personal Finance Edition: We pick up financial habits and information from social media, family, and friends all the time. In this session, we’ll break down money myths and misunderstandings and help you learn how to fact-check financial information. Student Union Room 402 @ 2pm