Ambassador Will Promote the Value of Financial Education to Teens Nationwide
SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Eighteen-year-old Tamara Johnson of Santa Fe, N.M., has won the prestigious honor of serving as National Ambassador for the Money Matters: Make it CountSM program, sponsored by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) and Charles Schwab Foundation. The role of the National Ambassador is to serve as spokesperson for the program and to spread the word about why getting grounded in the basics of money management is so crucial to lifelong success. Johnson is the third annual National Ambassador for Money Matters.
Through her experience with Money Matters, the high school senior and longtime member of the Pueblo of Pojoaque Boys & Girls Club gained new perspective on the importance of personal finance.
“For the most part, the average teen’s only financial issues consist of how we are going to pay for gas or how we are going to pay for dinner and a movie,” Johnson said, “But understanding the broader experience of managing money is what can truly help teens learn how to be successful. The earlier we learn about personal finance, the less we’ll have to worry about it when we’re older.”
Johnson quickly embraced the lessons she learned in the Money Matters program and applied them to her own money behavior. Since her junior year, she has made it her practice to diligently save a set portion of each paycheck from her part-time job, reserving for spending only what she absolutely needs for day-to-day expenses. She notes that this strategy enabled her to accumulate $4,000, which she intends to apply to upcoming college expenses. Johnson says she also gained valuable insights and strategies for how to plan for longer-term financial goals like funding college tuition. She believes the program has made a big impact on her life, which is one reason she assists in facilitating the Money Matters sessions in her Club and looks forward to reaching out to other teens across the country.
Along with the title of Money Matters National Ambassador, Johnson will receive a $5,000 college scholarship from Charles Schwab Foundation. She has already been accepted at the University of New Mexico and Marquette University, and looks forward to making a selection and beginning her freshman year in the fall. The Pueblo of Pojoaque Boys & Girls Club will additionally receive a matching grant of $5,000 from Charles Schwab Foundation to help fund the Club’s work in providing Money Matters to Club youth.
Nineteen other Boys & Girls Club teens are also being awarded scholarships for their achievement in gaining money management knowledge and skills. Of those, 14 will receive $2,000 scholarships. The four other finalists for the National Ambassador title will receive $2,500, and their Clubs will receive matching grants of $2,500 each.
The importance of a national ambassador
“Having a National Ambassador is crucial to the ongoing success of our program,” said Carrie Schwab Pomerantz, president of Charles Schwab Foundation. “It’s our hope and expectation that in this role Tamara will carry the torch and serve as an inspiration to other teens across the country.”
“Money Matters offers teens so much more than rote knowledge of the ABCs of personal finance,” said BGCA President and CEO Roxanne Spillett. “Evidence of this is how many times Club teens have been able to apply the lessons they’ve learned in Money Matters for themselves, their peers and even their families, making it a true, generation-changing program.”
Eighteen-year-old Tamara Johnson of Santa Fe, N.M., is the new National Ambassador for the Money Matters: Make it CountSM financial literacy program, sponsored by Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Charles Schwab Foundation.
Full list of Money Matters college scholarship recipients:
About Money Matters: Make It Count
Funded by Charles Schwab Foundation, Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s Money Matters program is designed to promote money management skills among teens, ages 13-18. The program consists of fun, interactive activities and exercises on topics such as using a checking account, managing debt, saving for college and learning the basics of investing. The program is available to all Boys & Girls Clubs that serve teens and is targeted primarily at teens from underserved communities. Since it was launched in 2003, more than 200,000 teens in 1,500 Boys & Girls Clubs across the U.S. have gone through the program.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (www.bgca.org) has enabled young people, especially those who need Clubs most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Today, more than 4,000 Boys & Girls Clubs serve more than 4 million young people through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs can be found throughout the country and on U.S. military installations worldwide, providing young people 6-18 years old with guidance-oriented character development programs conducted by trained, professional staff. Key programs emphasize leadership development; education and career exploration; community service; technology training; financial literacy; health and life skills; the arts; sports, fitness and recreation; and family outreach. In a Harris Survey of alumni, 57 percent said the Club saved their lives. National headquarters are located in Atlanta.
About Charles Schwab
The Charles Schwab Corporation (NYSE:SCHW) is a leading provider of financial services, with more than 300 offices and 7.8 million client brokerage accounts, 1.5 million corporate retirement plan participants, 768,000 banking accounts, and $1.49 trillion in client assets. Through its operating subsidiaries, the company provides a full range of securities brokerage, banking, money management and financial advisory services to individual investors and independent investment advisors. Named “Highest in Investor Satisfaction with Self-Directed Services” by J.D. Power and Associates in 2009, its broker-dealer subsidiary, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (member SIPC, www.sipc.org), and affiliates offer a complete range of investment services and products including an extensive selection of mutual funds; financial planning and investment advice; retirement plan and equity compensation plan services; referrals to independent fee-based investment advisors; and custodial, operational and trading support for independent, fee-based investment advisors through its Advisor Services division. Its banking subsidiary, Charles Schwab Bank (member FDIC and an Equal Housing Lender), provides banking and mortgage services and products. More information is available at www.schwab.com.
About Charles Schwab Foundation
Charles Schwab Foundation is a private, nonprofit organization funded by the Charles Schwab Corporation. Its mission is to create positive change through financial education, philanthropy, and volunteerism. More information is available at www.aboutschwab.com/community. (0410-2624)
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