Graduation 2020 is Reason to Celebrate
Graduation is a milestone, a significant event recognizing the pride and effort you put into your education. As the Class of 2020, this event may not be everything you’ve always pictured. To celebrate the men and women of the Class of 2020, all across the country schools, communities, churches and individual families are re-imagining ways to honor their graduates. It is happening because you succeeded. This graduation of yours is too big a milestone, too major an achievement not to celebrate. Embrace the accolades and good wishes, for they are well-deserved and unique to the times.
Like most milestones, graduation is not only about celebrating the accomplishments of your immediate past. A milestone is also about looking forward and appreciating how your recent success has prepared you for the next step. You may not know exactly what lies ahead, but you’ve made it this far, and you are ready.
Your next milestone is probably not retirement. There will be many accomplishments and significant events before then – first jobs, first babies, trip-of-a-lifetime, first home – and you can start preparing for those now. The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) offers a few tips to get started:
Start a budget. Learn about online and mobile services available to help you manage your finances and track spending remotely.
Plan for retirement. Automate your savings so that a portion of each paycheck goes directly into a savings account. Take advantage of your employers’ 401(k) plan and any matching contributions, if offered.
Spend responsibly. Shopping and weekend getaways are a great way to recharge from the work week but can eat away at your budget. Do your research and comparison shop before major purchases.
Establish an emergency fund. This is a big one. An emergency fund is there to cover life’s unexpected events and give you greater peace of mind. You can start small with a 52-Week Money Challenge (in a year’s time you’ll have socked away $1,378) or be more aggressive and start out with a lump sum and build from there. A good goal is to have three to six months of your net pay.
So go ahead... take a bow, take a breath, and take the next step. You’ve got this.