Office of Enrollment Management

Building Credit

What is a credit score?

A credit score measures your ability to manage debt, reflecting your reputation as a borrower. The FICO score, a common credit score, helps lenders assess your loan repayment likelihood.

FICO pie chart



Why Good Credit Matters


Lower interest rates
Saving money on insurance (car and homeowners)
Reduced or no security deposits on utilities and cell phone service

How to Improve Your Credit Score


Check Your Credit Report: Obtain a free annual credit report from Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion to spot errors and understand what impacts your score.

Use Bank Resources: Many banks and credit unions offer personalized tips to improve your credit score. 

Target Problem Areas: Focus on the specific factors lowering your score. 


Direct Grad Plus loans require a credit check and adverse credit history can affect your eligibility. Students should monitor their credit reports and scores. 

Explore more tips to improving your credit score (PDF).