COLUMBIA, Mo. – Registration is now open for a free three-part series, “Your Financial Health in the COVID-19 Era.” The webinars, starting Friday, May 1, are available online to all Missourians through a collaboration between the University of Missouri’s Department of Personal Financial Planning and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at MU.

The COVID-19 pandemic and response have affected people in unprecedented ways, including job loss, investment losses and business closures. The pandemic has also placed a heavy strain on health care systems, personal relationships and social safety nets.

Using plain language and easy-to-use tools, this series is designed to help participants manage some of the social and financial impacts and make sense of the overwhelming amount of information available now.

From 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on May 1, May 15 and May 29, each session includes a one-hour presentation followed by a 30-minute Q&A. The series is free and open to the public. Register at

Registered participant will receive email with information on joining the sessions using the Zoom application.

May 1: Financially Coping With COVID-19

This webinar discusses how to better cope with some of the personal finance impacts connected to the COVID-19 pandemic. Content covers resources and steps to use in the near future, as well as an explanation of new or enhanced social services. There will also be information about the stimulus payments as well as COVID-19-related scams and how to protect yourself. The webinar concludes with recent changes to IRS tax and retirement account rules, as well as a brief overview of managing investments in a turbulent stock market.

May 15: Behavioral Finance Basics You Can Use Now

In the current climate of economic uncertainty, it is more important than ever to act with intention toward our finances. However, we also know that intentions only account for about 20-30% of variance in behaviors. Why are good intentions sometimes not enough sometimes? Behavioral finance offers some explanations as to why we may do certain things. Instead of always acting in rational ways, we have a tendency to be influenced by emotions, environments, early socializations and marketing. This interactive session delves into research on behavioral finance that you can apply immediately or share with younger family members.

May 29: Investing in a COVID-19 World

When 2020 started, the economy was growing and employers were adding jobs. Since March, the stock market has taken investors on a roller coaster ride, and the normally safe bond market has nearly seized up. This session will recap the last three months in investing, and then look toward the next six to 12 months with a discussion of what the future might hold. Presenters will explore investment and tax strategies that might be attractive due to the decline in asset values and recent law changes.


Andrew Zumwalt, an assistant extension professor and Certified Financial Planner, runs the statewide Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program.

Marco Pantoja, an Accredited Financial Counselor and extension financial instructor, teaches personal finance to diverse groups across the state and provides one-on-one financial coaching for various programs.

Graham McCaulley is an assistant extension professor focusing on the intersections of personal finance, early socialization and family dynamics and how they affect decision-making in a variety of contexts.

This free series is possible through Osher@Mizzou, a continuing education program for Missourians age 50-plus. The program offers more than 75 noncredit courses over four semesters each academic year. Osher@Mizzou started online learning on March 30, 2020. Learn more at