Financial Stewardship

Financial stewardship is responsibly managing your money and resources to achieve your financial goals and ensure long-term financial health.

Step 1: What is the Long Game: If we want things that last, we need to look ahead to what we desire in the long run to help assess what is essential for right now and what is not.  For example, I want to own a home and two cars. I want to leave an inheritance for my family. I would like to always have what I need and some of the things I want. I want to be generous and be able to help others. I cannot do that if I am broke (with little to no money). Writing them down allows you to put them somewhere you will look every day to remind you of your WHY and help you grow in discipline. This is called Visioneering  A wise student once said, “How we start may not be up to us, but how we finish is!” Our hope is that with these resources you will have everything you need to learn and grow in financial stewardship. Leave a legacy for those after you.

Step 2: Be a Learner: Just like any skill, becoming financially savvy starts with learning. I've made it a habit to read books, listen to podcasts, and follow experts in personal finance. It's amazing how much you can learn just by dedicating a bit of time each week to educate yourself.

Step 3: Set Clear Goals AND Write them Down: One thing that's really helped me is setting clear financial goals. Whether it's saving for a dream vacation, buying a home, or retiring comfortably, having these goals in mind keeps me motivated and focused on managing my money wisely.

Step 4: Budgeting is Key: Create a budget to track your income and expenses. This helps you understand where your money is going and allows you to make informed choices about spending and saving. Focus on paying off debts while avoiding accruing new ones.

Step 5: Save and Invest Wisely: Make saving a habit and invest your money wisely to grow your wealth over time. Consider different investment options based on your goals and risk tolerance, and consistently review and adjust your strategy as needed. 

These resources are from people that lives show credibility to their financial wisdom. They all have various ways to grow in Financial Fortitude, find what bet suites you.



Workshops will be available throughout the year. Check the Financial Wellness calendar on our website! 

Money and Emotions Evaluation 

Goal: Demonstrate how Financial Literacy can improve many aspects of their life.

Money and Emotions 

  • Finding the relationship between your values, emotions and personal finances 
    • How do your finances affect your mood 
  • Factors that influence your financial decisions • How your current financial decisions impact your future. 
  • Emotions can get in the way of logic. 
    • Giving up long term enjoyment for instant gratification 
    • What is pleasurable now that will cause long term pain? 
      • No savings for emergencies. Spending future earnings (credit cards) 
      • No set financial plan 
      • Not considering inflation in relation to retirement (future stress/hardship) 
      • Marshmallow study 

  • How would you describe your relationship with money?
  • How do finances affect your social life?
    • Family and friends
  • How do your emotions affect your relationship with money? 
  • What motivates you to get money?
  • Can your motivation for money affect your wants and needs in life? 

  • Self-actualizing needs: personal growth, making a positive impact. 
  • Esteem needs: desire for personal achievement. 
  • Love and belonging needs: desire to be accepted. 
  • Security needs: desire for safety and security 
  • Physiological needs: food, water, air and sleep (comes above all others) 

  • How are they formed? 
  • How are they reinforced? 
  • Positive and negative psychological impact  

“40% of Americans are counting on the lottery, sweepstakes, getting married, or an inheritance to fund retirement”
- Walter Updegrave, Senior Editor of Money Magazine 

Create Your Own Budget!

A budget is a plan that shows you how you can spend your money every month. Making a budget can help you make sure you do not run out of money each month. A budget also will help you save money for your goals or for emergencies!

Seven steps to help you create your own budget:

  • Step 1: track your income and expenses
    • Income = money that you receive
    • Expense = money that you spend
  • Step 2: set income baseline
    • How much can you afford to spend?
  • Step 3: determine your expenses
    • “looking forward” = see where you spent your money
    • “looking backward” = budget your fixed expenses
  • Step 4: categorize your income and expenses
    • It can be as detailed as you like
  • Step 5: compare your income to your expenses
    • Strive to have more income than expenses
  • Step 6: make plans for unplanned expenses
    • Building your savings is important to make sure that you are financially afloat in times of emergency
  • Step 7: turn your budget into a document of freedom
    • You should feel at ease knowing that you won’t be overspending for the month 

  • Helps keep your finances on track
  • Allows you to see where you stand on an economical status
  • Ensures that you will always have money for the things that you need
  • Helps keep you out of debt and can help you work your way out of it 

Use this worksheet as a guideline to help you see how much money you spend this month. Then, use this month’s information to help you plan next month’s budget .

Steps for budgeting is received from the GradReady program available at the Stanislaus State website under Financial Aid and Scholarships. 

Sign In/Sign Up to the EveryDollar App

How to Use EveryDollar App

How to Make a Budget in 5 Steps

What is a Bank Account?

A bank account is a financial account, which stores money on behalf of a customer. Where deposits are accepted, funds are managed, and various financial services like loans, investments, and payment processing are provided (ex. banks, credit unions, and brokerage firms).

Two most common types: transaction accounts (or checking account) and savings accounts

  • Transaction: Easy and immediate access to money
  • Savings: Allows the customer to earn interest therefore limited access to money 

Banks Vs. Credit Unions

  • Security: Keeps your money safe and secure
  • Easy access to fast cash from an ATM and simple online shopping through a debit card.
  • Helps you develop sound financial management
  • Creates financial stability
  • Helps you plan for emergencies
  • Offers financial services to help you manage spending, saving, payments, and investments
  • Having a savings account which acquires interest helps protect you from inflation
  • Overall, helps organize and manage your spending through statements 

1. Accessibility

  • 24-hour access
  • Online banking
  • Mobile banking
  • Smartphone apps
  • Direct deposit 

2. Account Features

  • Account fees
  • Overdraft protection
  • Availability of funds
  • Interest rates
  • ATM & debit cards 

3. Location

  • Online only
  • Physical locations
  • ATM locations
  • Convenience
  • Proximity 

  • Monthly Service Fee
    • Also called a maintenance fee
    • Bank might charge this monthly just for having the account
  • Per-Check Fee
    • A fee for every check you write
    • Some banks may charge after writing a certain number of checks
  • Check Printing Fee
    • A fee for printing checks you purchase from your bank
  • ATM-Use Fee
    • A fee for using an ATM whether from your bank or from another bank
    • Using another bank’s ATM, that bank may charge an additional fee
  • Overdraft Fee
    • Also called NSF fees
    • Charged when you do not have enough money to cover expenses you are making
  • Returned Deposit Item
    • A fee associated with cashing out a check you wrote yet you do not have enough money in your account
  • Stop-Payment Fee
    • A fee associated with asking the bank to stop a check from being paid
    • A bank may not always be able to stop the check in time
  • Teller Fee
    • Some banks may charge a fee for making deposits or withdrawals through a teller more than a set number of times each month 

Saving: Involves putting money aside for future goals or emergencies (ex. emergency fund, saving for a vacation, or setting aside money for retirement).

  • Emergency Fund: Covers unexpected expenses. He typically recommends starting with $1,000 as a beginner emergency fund, then gradually building it to cover 3-6 months' worth of living expenses.
  • Sinking Funds: These are separate savings accounts for specific future expenses, such as car repairs, vacations, or Christmas gifts. Sinking funds help you avoid dipping into your emergency fund for non-emergencies.
  • Retirement Savings: It is important to start investing in your retirement early and consistently. It is recommended to begin investing in tax-advantaged retirement accounts like 401(k)s or IRAs, aiming for a retirement nest egg of at least 15% of your income.
  • Kids' College Funds: While Ramsey encourages parents to prioritize retirement savings over college funds, he suggests using tax-advantaged accounts like 529 plans or ESA (Education Savings Accounts) to save for children's education if possible.
    • Consider this: If you came from a low-income family and received a lot of FAFSA aid, keep in mind that your children may not qualify for as much, since you are educated and will likely have a successful career.
  • Debt Snowball: While not strictly savings, debt snowball method involves saving money to pay off debts systematically, starting with the smallest balance first while making minimum payments on all other debts.
  • Investment: Consider investing in diversified mutual funds for the long term, especially those that focus on growth stocks. Trying to predict market timing can be tricky, so diversifying your investments can improve your chances of growth. Starting investments early allows your money to grow steadily over time. Take the time to research the mutual funds or stocks you're interested in and don't hesitate to reach out to a financial advisor at your bank for advice. 

Investing: The act of allocating resources, typically money, with the expectation of generating income or profit in the future (ex. purchasing stocks in companies like Apple or Google, investing in real estate properties)

Saving vs Investing

Are You Saving Enough For Retirement?

Retirement Plans Explained

Updated: April 03, 2024