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Students Participate in Forum on Credit Card and Debt Issues

Spring 2008 | Archives

This winter, 138 MCC students attended three Brown Bag Forums on avoiding the pitfalls of credit card debt. The forums were held at the College´s three main campuses and were sponsored by Kappa Beta Delta business honor society.

The goal of these sessions was to promote awareness of credit card and debt issues; the forums also were part of the College Business Office´s initiatives to increase student exposure to personal finance and credit card practices. And they happened at a very relevant time.

In March and December 2007, the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs scheduled hearings to examine issues related to credit card practices. The Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, as well as the court of public opinion, were concerned about those practices related to interest charges, excessive fees, grace periods and charges when the debt is paid on time.

Todd Sites, a counselor with 35 years of experience, led the forums. He discussed a wide variety of topics with the students, including unsolicited credit card applications, interest rates and over limit fees, credit scores, identity theft, consumer rights with collection agencies and budgeting tips.

Idalene Williams, MCC instructor and Kappa Beta Delta advisor, said the students were receptive to the information and gained increased awareness and understanding of credit card debt. Fifty students requested a copy of their credit report, and all 138 in attendance received free educational services of credit advisors. Several students made phone calls to credit advisors seeking the process for disputing credit report issues.

Williams, Kappa Beta Delta and MCC´s Business Department plan to offer the series of forums again in the Spring. They also are exploring the possibility of collaborating with Omaha Public Schools´ Academy of Finance.

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