Carnegie Mellon University

Once you get here, you should consider opening a local bank account. A checking account will enable you to deposit money that you receive such as financial aid awards, student loans, or stipends. You will also be able to write checks and make purchases in stores or online using your debit card.

Even if you're moving to Pittsburgh from within the U.S. and have a checking or savings account with another U.S. bank, it's a good idea to open a local checking account. A local account will give you access to ATMs free of charge, including ATMs from PNC Bank and Citizens Bank located in the Cohon University Center and many more near campus, and will allow you to visit a local branch for in-person advice or service.

Before you close an account with your home institution, check whether they have ATMs or branches in Pittsburgh.

Carnegie Mellon has partnered with PNC Bank to link your student ID with new or existing PNC accounts. PNC operates five ATMs on campus and has four branches located near campus. By linking your account to your student ID, you can use your ID card to get cash at ATMs or as a debit card, 'pinned' transaction at any merchant who accepts STAR or PLUS cards. If you choose not to link your student ID to your PNC account, you can still use your debit card anywhere that Visa debit is accepted.

For more information on opening an account, visit PNC's Carnegie Mellon student banking website.

Note: For information about opening an account with a bank other than PNC, visit that institution's website.

Domestic Students

Domestic Students can sign up for a PNC Virtual Wallet account online. In addition to basic name and address information, you'll need:

  • Your Social Security Number
  • Government issued photo ID (driver's license, state-issued ID, or a military ID)
  • A way to make your first deposit
    • your debit or credit card numbers (if funding your account with a card)
    • your existing routing and account numbers (if funding your account from another financial institution)

If you are applying for a joint account, you'll need the address, Social Security number and government ID information for the joint applicant as well.

International Students

International students must visit a PNC branch in person to open an account. PNC operates a branch in the Cohon University Center as well as many other branches close to campus (see below). To open an account, international students will need to present:

  • A valid passport as primary identification
  • A valid student ID

It may take up to 10 days to receive your debit card once you open your account, so make sure you bring enough cash with you to cover basic necessities or incidentals until your debit card arrives. If you have a valid credit card issued in your name, bring that as well.

In addition to the PNC Bank and Citizens Bank ATMs in the Cohon University Center, there are several other banks within a few miles of campus:


Shadyside/East Liberty

Squirrel Hill

Citizens Bank

4570 Fifth Ave
(888) 832-7837

5550 Centre Ave
(412) 578-7770

1801 Murray Ave
(412) 521-5542

Dollar Bank

3714 Fifth Ave
(412) 631-3178

6320 Shakespeare St
(412) 362-7638

5822 Forbes Ave
(412) 521-7031

First National Bank

3520 Forbes Ave
(412) 687-1200

800 S Aiken Ave
(412) 621-2320

1940 Murray Ave
(412) 521-4800

First Niagara Bank

3700 Fifth Ave
(412) 687-7670


217 N Highland Ave
(412) 665-4040

2001 Murray Ave
(412) 422-1893

1730 Murray Ave
(412) 421-5818

PNC Bank

4022 Fifth Ave
(412) 621-0300

5601 Walnut St
(412) 363-3400

5810 Forbes Ave
(412) 521-8800

Yes. Registering a bank account with the university is the fastest, easiest, and most convenient way to make a payment to or receive a refund from the university. No checks, no lines, no hassles. And best of all, this service is free of charge.

To register a bank account with the university, visit Student Information Online (SIO).

Yes. Graduate students who receive a stipend from their academic department or who work a paid hourly position at the university (or both) can enroll in direct deposit. After you enroll, your paycheck is electronically deposited into the account of your choice.

To sign up for direct deposit, visit the university's payroll management system, Workday.

In Workday you can also:

  • View personal information (such as your address and emergency contacts)
  • Enter time worked (hourly employees only)
  • Self-Identify a disability or military service
  • View pay slips processed in Workday
  • View and update tax withholdings