Planning for Financial Literacy Month

ScholarNet Blog Articles | February 28, 2024

Financial Literacy: More Important Than Ever Today

Today’s inflation has pushed interest rates, energy rates, housing costs, and prices of other goods and services higher than in decades. Understanding how to live in today’s challenging economic climate is important for any consumer. For those students navigating how to pay for college or repay their student loan debt, it’s even more crucial.

Now marking its 21st anniversary, Financial Literacy Month offers an opportunity to empower individuals and families to make more informed decisions, taking control of their financial futures. At its most basic level, Financial Literacy Month is about helping individuals gain knowledge and skills to effectively manage personal finances. On a global level, it’s about a network of organizations and agencies in our community that share a goal of empowering personal financial understanding, growth, and success for individuals across all ages.

Who to Involve in Financial Literacy Month

Financial Literacy Month can best serve the needs of consumers by pulling together the resources, strengths, and efforts of various government agencies, community groups, and organizations.

Local schools at all levels will be focused on financial literacy in April. Instructors in business, consumer sciences, and economics at local high schools, your institution, or other higher education institutions in the area are great resources on financial literacy topics. Learn about their workshops during April and consider partnering with them on shared initiatives to help you reach students and families.

Banks and credit unions have a commitment to community development that is required by the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977, and many of them choose to participate in Financial Literacy Month for this reason. They also care about the financial success of their customers and members. These institutions may be able to partner with your office to provide helpful resources for students and families on topics such as credit cards, loans, interest, budgeting, saving for college, and more.

Organizations that are state affiliates of the national Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy play a key role in driving Financial Literacy Month activities and creating resources for their communities. Contacting your local Jump$tart affiliate can help you identify potential partners for your events and activities.

Check to see whether area libraries are hosting financial literacy programs led by professionals on topics such as debt management, credit, budgeting, or other topics.

Governmental agencies such as your state’s department of consumer affairs, banking, or finance oversee banks and other financial institutions. They may also run workshops or provide other resources to the public or those who coordinate activities for Financial Literacy Month. In April 2023, the U.S. Financial Literacy and Education Commission released updated resources to their Best Practices for Financial Literacy and Education at Institutions of Higher Education fact sheet. This contains materials that are specifically useful for financial aid professionals. Watch Federal Student Aid’s Electronic Announcements to see if additional resources are provided for 2024.

Ways to Get Involved

Once you’ve identified resources available to you, consider hosting or co-hosting your own Financial Literacy event or workshop—or put together materials on key topics and make them available to students and families.

If your time is more limited, simply find helpful resources, local events, and activities for students and families offered by the financial literacy partners you’ve identified. Blogs and podcasts on personal finance topics can also provide useful, digestible information you may want to share. Take all of these resources and compile a comprehensive social calendar and create posts that inform students and families—in the appropriate channels—how they can gain important financial knowledge and skills during the month.

Share Your Ideas

We want to hear what you do to celebrate Financial Literacy Month—and your colleagues can gain from your insightful ideas and experiences as well. Reach out to your ScholarNet representative and let us know how you intend to improve financial literacy on campus this April.

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