This study had two distinct purposes. First, to determine the predictors of financial stress among college students who sought free peer-based financial counseling from a large Midwestern university (N = 675). Secondly, to determine the effectiveness of the particular financial counseling center from a subsample of those who sought help (N = 97). Results of the regression analysis indicate that students more likely to experience financial stress include freshmen, those with low perceived mastery and net worth, and those with median student loan debt as compared to those with no student loan debt. Results of t-test analyses suggest that financial counseling had positive effects on subjective financial knowledge and financial attitudes and mixed effects on financial behaviors.

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