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Financial literacy is increasingly important for all college students, but none more so than students in professional health or medical programs. Many of them are in uncharted territory, facing new and unique financial decisions and obligations that accompany these costly degrees, such as lengthy unpaid internships and expensive certification processes. Academic librarians are well situated to be able to meet these needs, not by teaching financial literacy themselves, but by connecting the students with subject experts. This has been done at the University of North Dakota through a partnership between campus librarians and UND’s Financial Wellness office. For example, the Harley E. Library of the Health Sciences collaborated with the Financial Wellness Office to provide study-break (“de-stress”) programming that included financial literacy topics. Other opportunities for involvement include leveraging the librarian’s liaison relationships to provide access to the target audience. For example, librarians have facilitated meetings between their liaison departments and the Financial Wellness Program Coordinator to discuss ways in which financial literacy can be integrated into their curricula or offered to their students as an extracurricular service. The Financial Wellness Program Coordinator has also been involved in small group discussions on financial literacy topics, such as the Native Behavioral Health Research Team, coordinated by the team’s embedded librarian. Librarians can advocate for their involvement as a mutually beneficial exchange. The subject experts benefit from access to a challenging audience, i.e. professional degree students, while the librarians contribute to the well-being of their students.

Publication Date


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Grand Forks, ND


Student Counseling and Personnel Services


Presented at the 2017 NDLA Annual Conference: Libraries Transform, Grand Forks, ND, October 4-6, 2017.

Leveraging Cross-Campus Collaborations to Promote Financial Literacy