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Tips for Soon-to-Be College Graduates

Tips for Soon-to-Be College Graduates

Tips for Soon-to-Be College Graduates

May 13th, 2019—As college students prepare to graduate and begin their professional careers, First Community Bank and Trust and the Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) want to remind them of the importance of planning for their financial future. 

“Graduation is an exciting time for many students transitioning from the classroom to the ‘real world’ and starting to establish their financial independence,” said Greg Ohlendorf, President and CEO of First Community Bank and Trust. “As your local community bank, we can work with recent graduates to set them up for success by creating a financial plan that incorporates their short and long-term financial goals. Remember, the financial decisions you make now will affect your future for years to come.”

ICBA and FCB&T offer the following tips to help new graduates take control of their finances: 

  • Start a budget. Put your smartphone to good use and learn about our online services available at the bank to help you manage your finances and track spending remotely. To keep track of your account activity quickly and easily, sign up for First eMobile and First eAlerts.
  • Pay off student loans. It may be tempting to make the minimum monthly payments, but a more aggressive repayment plan can save thousands in the long run. Some companies will help you pay off your student debt; make sure to ask about this when negotiating your new job. 
  • 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. If you don’t see it, chances are you won’t miss it so much. 
  • Spend responsibly. Shopping and weekend getaways are a great way to recharge from the work week but can quickly eat away at your budget. Research the products you’d like to buy, along with restaurants and excursions in your price range and plan accordingly so these purchases and activities don’t become a financial hardship.
  • Establish an emergency fund to cover life’s unexpected events and give you greater peace of mind. Start by putting away $1,000 (the daily cost of a tall latte in a year) then contribute spare change or a little from each paycheck until you have between three to six months of net pay. 

“This stage of a grad’s life is all about empowerment—and financial matters are no different,” said Greg Ohlendorf. “We congratulate this year’s graduating class and wish them a prosperous financial future.”  


About First Community Bank and Trust

First Community Bank and Trust is a privately-owned bank. Established in 1916 First Community Bank and Trust has been serving Beecher, IL, Peotone, IL and the surrounding communities for over 100 years. Our commitment to providing the best banking products and services is matched only by our outstanding customer service. We offer traditional community banking services, including mortgage, consumer, and commercial lending, as well as state of the art electronic banking services.

About ICBA
The Independent Community Bankers of America® creates and promotes an environment where community banks flourish. With more than 52,000 locations nationwide, community banks constitute 99 percent of all banks, employ more than 760,000 Americans and are the only physical banking presence in one in five U.S. counties. Holding more than $4.9 trillion in assets, $3.9 trillion in deposits, and $3.4 trillion in loans to consumers, small businesses and the agricultural community, community banks channel local deposits into the Main Streets and neighborhoods they serve, spurring job creation, fostering innovation and fueling their customers’ dreams in communities throughout America. For more information, visit ICBA’s website at  

Press Contact:
Bridget Goedke, Marketing Assistant
First Community Bank and Trust
(708) 946-2246