Updated: Jul 30
Hello everyone! Today I thought I would take some time to introduce myself. I'm not a money-crazed millionaire, or a trust-fund kid from Connecticut. So why am I making a blog about money? I grew up in a rural area without a lot money, due to some extenuating family circumstances. I saw how stressed my parents felt and how one unexpected expense would mean maxed-out credit cards and missed payments on the mortgage.
I did well in school and directed my stress into studying and working. Somehow, I never seemed to develop a passion like my classmates did for history or English or international relations. I worked hard and succeeded in most subjects, but without much interest or motivation beyond getting into college. I applied to as many colleges as possible and went to the one that offered the most financial aid.
So, when I turned 18 and it was time to decide what I would be for the rest of my life (haha), I somewhat randomly decided to go into engineering. The money was there and I was good enough at math and science. My family and friends were surprised but didn't have any better ideas.
I took out loans for everything the first two years -- housing, tuition, books, meal plans. I worked full time over the summers -- luckily there isn't much competition for engineering interns in rural areas -- and when I could during academic terms. After sophomore year, I bought a car with my savings and suddenly realized that I should be using all that money I had worked for. (I'm not sure what I thought before that. Money was just for saving?)
So I covered most of my own expenses the last two years of college, except for some more school loans. It felt great to start supporting myself and see the years of work pay off.
And now here I am: 22 years old, completely broke, lots of student loans, no family money to fall back on, living in my parent's house in a town with no jobs (even pre-covid 19).
But I'm here to tell you: I have a plan, and you can have one too! After watching everything that Netflix and Hulu's free trial have to offer, I read a few (dozen) personal finance and investing books. I read every blog from the last decade about the FIRE movement to retire early and how to minimize taxes. I listened to some amazing podcasts from people who started out like me, or even in worse positions (hello, 2008!) and are thriving today.
And somehow, despite everything going on right now, I'm confident that we can all become financially literate, kind, caring, bad-ass, not-completely-broke 23-year-olds. Anyway, considering the current political/social/financial/environmental situation, things can't get much worse.