Written by Rosie Neill

Product Marketing Manager

We recently ran a CPD-accredited webinar series for university and college staff about how to support students with financial risks. It’s safe to say it was a success and we loved having so many of you join us for such an important topic.

We were also thrilled to welcome fantastic expert speakers across the 6 webinars. By covering a new activity each week, we were able to go into great detail about some of the main risks that students face regarding their money. As well as give lots of really practical, tangible suggestions to help staff feel equipped to provide the best support possible for their students.

We’ve brought all of the sessions together here; you’ll find a short description of each one below, plus links to a more detailed summary and each session’s recording!

1. Buy Now Pay Later

The guest speaker for our first session was Alice Tapper, creator of Go Fund Yourself and champion of the #regulateBuyNowPayLater campaign. Alice spoke to us about the growing use of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) services among students and the risks associated with this industry.

Alice discussed:

  • Why support staff need to pay attention to BNPL
  • What BNPL services are and how they work
  • Whether all BNPL services are bad
  • How providers differ in terms of risks and implications of missed payments
  • How staff can best support students when it comes to BNPL

Read the full webinar summary to learn more.

Watch the recording: https://youtu.be/01vd4ShpsSY

2. Loan sharks & illegal money lenders

We know illegal lenders are something support staff have been faced with for a long time so it was great to be joined by Steve Ward of the England Trading Standards Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) to speak in detail about them.

Steve covered:

  • What a loan shark is
  • How they can be identified
  • Why students are particularly vulnerable
  • How staff can best support students who fall victim to loan sharks
  • Where loan sharking activity can be reported to

Learn more about supporting students with illegal money lending.

Here’s the full recording: https://youtu.be/DUqowpjqgHw 

3. Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency has become extremely popular with young people during the pandemic. The combination of having a lot more time on their hands and also the ease of access to this new-age, digital activity has exponentially increased students’ involvement.

In this session, Vivi looked at:

  • What crypto is and how it can be bought
  • How students are trying to make money from crypto
  • The dangers for students
  • Spotting crypto trading in a bank statement
  • How staff can support students to use cryptocurrency safely

Get up to speed with crypto with the full webinar summary.

Watch the recording, including a ‘show & tell’ of a live cryptocurrency exchange: https://youtu.be/SN5-9A1dRuE 

4. Trading & investing

In session 4, we spoke more broadly about trading and investing as far as students are concerned. Young people have been attracted to this behaviour for a long time but, like with cryptocurrency, their involvement has skyrocketed over the past year.

Some of the points Vivi discussed were:

  • The difference between investing, trading and meme trading
  • Why students are increasingly engaging in stock market activity and the dangers of doing so
  • Whether money can be accessed once it has been traded or invested
  • Spotting trading and investing activity in a bank statement
  • How staff can support students to trade and invest safely

Learn more about trading & investing as it relates to students.

Full webinar recording: https://youtu.be/LzyLQb31t7o 

5. Gambling & gaming

Kev Clelland of the Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust (YGAM) spoke to us about gambling and gaming behaviours among students in the penultimate webinar of the series.

YGAM has carried out research looking at the risks of these behaviours for university students, which Kev shared with us in the session. He also detailed:

  • What we know about students’ gambling and gaming behaviour
  • Gambling and gaming risks for students
  • Signs of gambling-related harm in students
  • How university staff can support students with gambling and gaming
  • Signposting and support for students

Read the gambling & gaming webinar summary.

Full session recording: https://youtu.be/JskFLtGWWqs 

6. Impact of financial risk on student mental health

Dr Dominque Thompson returned to speak in the final instalment of the series, bringing together all the content of the first 5 sessions to make clear the relationship between money and student mental health and the impact of financial risk.

Dom spoke about:

  • The complex relationship between risk, money and mental health
  • What is meant by ‘good mental health’
  • Student motives and consequences of risk-taking behaviour
  • What support staff can do to help
  • Signposting and help for students

Learn more.

Webinar recording: https://youtu.be/To0jj-v0HBk 


Thank you to everyone who joined us throughout the series. We hope you enjoyed each session and found them a useful resource to help you to provide the best support possible for your students.

We’ll be back for the start of the academic year with an exciting new series of webinars – keep an eye out for those! Our staff newsletter will be the first place we announce the line-up so make sure you’re subscribed.

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