A year into the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. government has provided two rounds of stimulus checks to its citizens, with more to come.
The U.S. Senate approved a budget bill as part of President Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package, which would include a third stimulus check of $1,400 for eligible individuals.
While many jobs adapted to a remote work environment, this was not the case for employees working customer service jobs at restaurants and retail. These industries were hit hard when the government ordered closures and lockdowns.
According to data from the U.S. Census, Americans primarily spent their stimulus checks on food, rent or mortgage payments and monthly bills, but how did students use their stimulus checks?
Some students are making the most of their money by investing, saving, paying bills and trying to avoid increased debt pileup.
“The first one, I paid rent and bills for a month because I was unemployed at the time, and then I treated myself to the complete collection of Gary Larsen for my birthday gift to myself,” said Kate Pratt, a psychology major. “The second one, I paid credit card bills, put $200 towards savings, and the rest I used for a weekend getaway with my boyfriend.”
With the sudden interest in the stock market due to the social media frenzy of GameStop, investing has been prevalent among young people in hopes to make some fast cash.
“I got both checks and saved them both. I put them towards my Vanguard account, which is my stock money, and will continue this with any future stimulus checks,” said McKenna Edwards, an English teaching major.
A common theme with students and their spending was a mix of responsible bill paying as well as buying some fun things to treat themselves.
“I did get both checks. The recent one went all to rent and the first one went to rent, a credit card payment and student loans,” stated Allison Barry, a business admin major. “My next one will be used to pay debt and get a pedicure.”