Date of Award

Fall 11-29-2018

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Professional Writing (MAPW)




Dr. Chris Palmer


Dr. Anne Richards


According to NerdWallet, 75 percent of Americans do not live off a budget and half of them cannot produce $400 in an emergency. But how much you make isn’t the main concern—it’s your margin that matters most. This capstone, which includes several chapters from the book Margin Matters: How to Live on a Simple Budget and Crush Debt Forever, provides practical strategies for creating and sticking to a simple budget, eliminating debt permanently, and managing expenses to create the most margin at any income level. It describes how the author erased nearly $75,000 of debt in just under three years.

Additionally, these chapters cover topics such as the psychology of money, the real cost of college, dying with debt, expecting the unexpected, differentiating needs from wants, and understanding why a home is a bad investment.