North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper presented advice for student financial health during a visit to East Carolina University Sept. 18. The visit was part of a statewide College Cash & Credit Tour. (Photos by Cliff Hollis)
FOCUS ON FINANCES Attorney General visits ECU on multi-campus tour
North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper visited East Carolina University on Thursday as part of an initiative to educate college consumers on making wise financial choices.
Cooper hosted approximately 35 ECU students and guests in Mendenhall Student Center for the College Cash & Credit Tour. The event featured presentations from experts in his Consumer Protection Division on student loans, credit and debit cards and the risks of identity theft.
ECU junior Ashley Griffith, center, said she appreciated the opportunity to learn about resources available for financial wellbeing.
“We want to offer tips today to make your lives easier and to help you avoid financial problems in the future,” Cooper told students in attendance. “It’s also really important that you know where to go to find the resources you may need.”
Ashley Griffith, a junior in business management and marketing at ECU, said the identity theft recommendations were especially useful to her. “And it’s nice to know that I have a governmental support team (in the Attorney General’s office) behind me if some kind of fraud does happen.”
Assistant Attorney General Matt Liles indicated in his presentation that 59% of college students in North Carolina graduate with some form of student debt. He said at ECU, specifically, that number was 65% in 2012. “It works out to be approximately $24,000 per person right off the bat when you graduate.”
ECU’s Director of Financial Aid Julie Poorman provides guidance and support to students and their families during the financial aid process. She offered some additional advice to students in the crowd.
ECU Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Virginia Hardy speaks during the College Cash & Credit Tour at ECU Sept. 18.
“We often encourage students to keep an eye on their student loans with the National Student Loan Data System,” Poorman said. “When they go to do loan consolidation or check their credit reports later on, those student loans should match what’s on their NSLDS account.”
In addition to ECU, Cooper’s tour included stops at five other North Carolina college campuses: High Point University, Queens University in Charlotte, Shaw University in Raleigh, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke and Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington.
Resources from the event, such as a student checklist and videos of the presentations, are available online at ncdoj.gov.