Teaching Financial Literacy to Students Matters

by John White

Teaching financial literacy to students is a strategy to support both student and school financial success.

Buzzwords are everywhere, and people overuse these words so much that we don’t often consider what they really mean. In higher ed, you have likely heard countless times the buzzword “Financial Literacy”. But have you analyzed what that means?

Investopedia defines financial literacy as: “The ability to understand and effectively use various financial skills, including personal financial management, budgeting, and investing. The lack of these skills is called financial illiteracy.” And while that definition is clear, after working with many students, we could take it a bit further and say financial literacy means: To possess the necessary knowledge to make wise and responsible financial decisions in everyday life situations.

Truthfully, the fact is that majority of adults in the U.S.A. lack the necessary financial literacy skills. For school administrators, that fact implies that most of your students did not learn how to manage money at home. The primary reason is that parents can’t teach what they do not know or practice. Like it or not, if your students are financially illiterate, they could negatively impact your school.  Did you know that financial constraints are the top reason students give for dropping out of college? Also, consider these three top repercussions of financial illiteracy.

Importance of Financial Literacy

Like it or not, if your students are financially illiterate, they could negatively impact your school.  Did you know that financial constraints are the top reason students give for dropping out of college? Consider that:

    • If your students don’t have the tools to make wise financial decisions, that could affect your completion rates. ​
    • Defaults raise your CDRs and can lead to loss of Title IV funding.
    • Students who default damage their credit scores significantly and this negative mark can limit employment opportunities.

Financial illiteracy is a vicious cycle of lose/lose. Everyone loses when students do not succeed.   We must recognize that statistics are leading us to make changes in how we teach students. For example:

    • The majority of US citizens tend to spend more than we earn
    • ​Regardless of income, 78% of US citizens are living paycheck to paycheck ​
    • 4 in 10 adults are not able to cover an emergency expense​ of $400
    • Most young adults underestimate the length of time it would take to pay off a credit card balance

Because financial literacy training is lacking in k-12 programs, when these financially illiterate students take out loans to complete their education, that system sets students up to fail regarding repayment. Schools suffer when students default. But schools can take a proactive approach by providing financial literacy training.

Where Can You Find Financial Literacy Training for Your Students?

In 2017 Champion College Services launched ChampionEmpowerment.com as an online resource teaching valuable life skills. Rather than creating your own program, for an affordable cost per student, Champion College Services offers a robust turn-key program so that schools can easily provide students with financial literacy resources. This program includes ten of our most valuable courses and can be customized to included additional topics to meet your students’ needs.

Champion Empowerment Financial Literacy Course Content

  • Financial Literacy 101
  • Credit Scores: The Basics
  • Savings Accounts: Why Are They Important?
  • Identity Theft
  • Managing Student Loan Repayment
  • Insurance Basics
  • Understanding the Three Most Common Types of Taxes
  • An Overview of Mortgages
  • Being Personally Accountable
  • FIRE Lifestyle (Financial Independence Retire Early)

Financial Literacy Will Help Your School AND Your Students

Are you interested in learning more about Champion’s financial literacy training? Contact John White by phone at 480.433.2392​ or email john.white@championcollegeservices.com.

Are you interested in a certificate program? Champion has teamed up with the American Medical Certification Association (AMCA) to provide you with an in-depth Financial Literacy Certificate Program that can be offered to your students. To learn more about this program contact Danielle Sadighi by phone at 973.582.1800​ or email Danielle@AMCAexams.com​.

JOHN WHITE joined Champion College Services as Sales Manager in 2013 and has built many strong relationships within the industry. He studied communications at Arizona State University to start a fast-paced career in sales. With over eighteen years of sales experience, he has held high-level sales positions taking on roles that provided him the expertise and high-level management skills required to oversee sales operations at Champion. Mr. White works hard to find the right solution for each school to meet the school’s goals and stay within budget. His optimism, enthusiasm, and positive outlook are contagious, making him a tremendous asset to the Champion team.