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Students should beware of credit card debt

By Christopher Tray' "StLttlcrtts slrorrlrl, Iirst oll. ttetltl w't'll ollt'tr rrrrrr llrirrls lor'
EDITOR ttutke u budge t ol lrow rrrrre lr lltc orrt's llrul. in lue l. tk'
they want to spend and liow "A large nurrrber ()l' studctrts
Free T-shirts, mugs, and seat they plan to pay back the debt," at universities use their credit
cushions aside, it is rather easy Fox-Davis said. "Finding out card in responsible ways," Fox-
to- see that more and more about the annual fee, the annual Davis said. "For those that
college students are beginning percentage rate, as well as the don't, we advocate that they
to accumulate credit card debt. accruemenl of debt are just should use their credit cards for
As reported in a 1998 printing some of the issues that the educational means such as
rrl' the Carrrpu.s Mottitor. il was student should think about paying for tuition,
lirund that full-time students before signing up for any card." and/or things like books. Those
control in excess of $19 billion The Student Monitor also who use credit cards for
tlrllars in annual spending. reported that nearly 60 percent things such as
According to the United of college students pay their clothes, furniture, and other
Strrtt's Sludr'rrt Association rnonthly credit card in full. Of expensive home appliances are
(t lSSn ) arrcl its nresident the other 40 percent, 8l percent the ones that seenl ttl gct
Kenrlnr Iirx-l)lvis. students of tlrese students pay more than thenrselves into tlre rlost debt."
wtsE ADvtcE - colese students
sltottltl ttlwltys gcl p'i.1 tlrc nrirrirrrunr anrounl due . Currently, Fox I)avis' "r"
common sense when applying for credit cards. credit card
liorrr tlrc crcdit carcl
in lirlrrral iorr l)cspitc thcsc srlrr.rcwlrirt (|r'gilnlzatron ls partnenn{ t-lp debt can be a big problem for students who use credit cards
compuny hclirrc cvcr srgrring u1r prornising statistics, tlrc srtrall to purchase big-ticket luxury items such as furniture,
tbr the card. f'ew who do not manaue their continued on page 2 appliances and clothes.

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Cfedat Cafds ' r continuedfrompage l
with MasterCard in order to in the hopes that they'll hold feedback we have had to endure Another vital concern is that cards typically top out at around
spread the word of collegiate seminars to show students how in recent months has stemmed many students do not exercise 15 percent A.P.R.
consumer debt. to better manage their credit. from consumer groups from "After a student .builds up a
the correct option of keeping up
"So far, we have a list of 50 "It's a shame, because often Washington D.C," she said. favorable credit history,
on their payments.
target campuses set up all over times, students are unfairli Colin Crowley, a financial "Students need to be
graduates, and finds
the counhy to warn students taken advantage of," Fox-Davis advisor at Gromco organized so they can pay their employnent," Crowley said, ..it
about the perils of credit card said, "and really, that is one area Incorporated, feels that many bills on time," Crowley said. is at that time that they wilt be
debt," Fox-Davis said. "In that we want to cut down on students get themselves into "Late payments can show up on in h position to take advantage
addition to that. we have sent with the credit card companies. trouble simply by taking on a your credit repo$ for up to of low rate card otfers."
out boxes upon boxes of our When MasterCard told us they credit line that isjust too high. seven years and with that, can When asked about the USSA
'Are You Credit Wise' were also getting an educational "Personally, I would affect your credit limit after you and MasterCard partnership,
pamphlets that help to explain program off the ground, we recommend that freshmen start even Crowley elicited concern.
how students can better manage thought it would be a great idea with one low credit line ($500- "Whether or not MasterCard
Although many credit card
their credit line." to partner up with them." and the federal government can
$1000)," Crowley said. "Just companies tend to lure in actually present
Fox-Davis has also As far as students go, the idea because students mav be students
students by offering low helpful information that with
distributed a power-point of MasterCard getting involved accepted for five or more credit thev
introductory annual percentage will actually pay attention to,
presentation to student has been well received. Fox- cards.does not mean that they rates, Crowley further related well, that is another question."
governmen ts
lgrgs_s,!he, cgun tr1 Davis said. 'The only negative should apply for five cards." that these "special-offer" credit