Americans’ biggest financial regret is not student loan debt. It’s actually that they didn’t start saving for retirement early enough. So this is the opportunity for you to open up a Roth IRA. Start to get that funded. Also, if you have a workplace retirement savings program available, take advantage of that to maximize any employer match.

If you have additional cash, make sure you’re putting some money aside for your emergency savings. Not that you’re necessarily going to need that right now, but you are going to need that in the years ahead, post-graduation.

Beyond that, if you have additional cash and you’re still looking to pay down some of the student loans, fine. Start chipping away at the highest interest rate loans. But cover the bases in terms of retirement savings and emergency savings first. That’s how you build a solid financial foundation.