Student Credits Finance Course for Inspiration to Complete Long Awaited Degree

Thursday, March 28, 2019

When Arlinda Griffin learned about a free three-credit class at GCC and realized the savings for completing her education, she quickly enrolled.

The course, Money Management for Life, would arm her with new knowledge to manage her finances and provide guidance for how to create short and long-term personal financial goals. For Arlinda, the rewards of the class have been profound, since completing her degree had been a test of patience. She had been taking classes at GCC since 1998 but found the ability to go to school on a regular basis to be impossible.

“Over the years, I had to drop classes and withdraw on several occasions,” said Arlinda, who served as primary caregiver for her mother, who was disabled.

Money Management for Life is offered through the generosity of Guardian Life Insurance Company and covers budgeting, saving, credit management, insurance and investing. All tuition, fees and instructional materials are free. The instructors for the course, which meets on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and began a new session this month, are Lorraine Li and Ray Zeek.

“The course heightened my awareness,” Arlinda said, noting that the information about credit scores, how to manage income and retirement planning was particularly insightful. “They gave us so many resources.”

In May 2018, 20 years after her college journey began, Arlinda graduated with an A.S. in General Studies. Along the way, she also earned certificates as a Community Health Worker, in Customer Service & Sales and as a Medical Office Assistant. Griffin said that had it not been for GCC’s partnership with Guardian, she would not have thought to re-enroll at GCC and finish her degree. Her accomplishment also encouraged her interest in completing a bachelor’s degree.