Opening a bank account in the United States and Financial Smarts!

UMBC has developed Financial Smarts @ UMBC to help students obtain the tools necessary to make informed and effective decisions about finances. Once you start making money, it is important to develop this important life skill so that you can prepare for your financial future.  This is a free resource all UMBC students are encouraged to explore!

Having a bank account is very important in the United States. For example, many employers prefer to use direct deposit for your paycheck. Direct deposit will deposit your earnings directly into your bank account instead of providing you with a physical paycheck. You will need a bank account in order to take advantage of this option.

There are many options when choosing a bank in the United States. UMBC’s on-campus banking partner is PNC Bank. PNC Bank is the sixth largest bank in the USA, with over 2,300 branches in 20 states.  UMBC does not require you to bank at PNC, but there re many advantages to using PNC as your bank you may want to consider, such as reduced fees and the Virtual Wallet Student®.

Key features of the Virtual Wallet Student® account:

  • No monthly service fee or minimum balance requirement
  • One free incoming domestic or international wire transfer per month
  • Free use of PNC ATMs. There are three PNC ATMs on campus
  • Free online banking and digital banking app

This PNC website also contains financial literacy options including Banking in the US. You can visit the website here.

Want to learn more?

Want to open an account?

  • International students can only open an account in person at the branch. Contact the PNC Catonsville branch for an appointment, or with any other questions: PNC Bank – Catonsville Office
    728 Frederick Road, Catonsville, MD 21228


Other banks in the UMBC area:

Bank of America
5211 East Drive
Baltimore Maryland, 21227
Wells Fargo Bank
1060 Maiden Choice Lane
Baltimore, Maryland 21229
Maryland State Employees Credit Union (ATM On Campus)
University of Maryland, Baltimore branch
418 W. Baltimore St. 
Baltimore, Maryland 21201