High School Branches
Promoting financial literacy to future generations is one of the most important goals we have at BHCCU, as well as our biggest challenge. The most recent studies of high school students by the Treasury Department, Department of Education, & Jumpstart have all indicated that the percent of students that meet literacy scores is declining. You only have to look at the average student loan or credit card debt to see the results. Blackhawk is committed to fighting the statistics. We have opened credit union branches in 2 Janesville High Schools to educate children in our communities.
The branches are staffed by dedicated high school students that operate the credit union during lunch hours. Employees are very involved in promoting financial education to their classmates through classroom presentations, creating fun games such as Financial Fun Fridays and Trivia Tuesdays at the schools.
Recognizing that student needs go beyond financial literacy, our high school students started the non-profit initiative called the Parker & Craig Closets to collect and distribute clothes, snacks and personal hygiene items to fellow students that cannot afford them. The students raise funds and collect donations to fill the closets. In 2011 they served over 140 students!
BHCCU couldn’t be more proud of our students at Craig and Parker High School branches! Their dedication has changed the lives of many young adults!
To donate to the Parker of Craig closet please stop in at any our school or local branches to donate items or funds to support a Closet.
The Need for Financial Literacy:
The Treasury Department and Department of Education have teamed the past three years to assess financial literacy in U.S. high schools, and the results haven’t been pretty: the average score of almost 76,900 students in 2010 was 70%. Last year’s testing of about 84,000 students and this year’s of about 80,000 students were both a point lower: 69%.
The problem has been a long time coming. A biennial survey by Jumpstart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy, conducted from 1997 to 2008 (when many Millennials were in high school) showed high school seniors doing even worse. In 1997, the average score on a 31-question financial literacy exam given as part of the survey was 57.3%. In 2008, the average score was at its lowest ever, 48.3%.
- $25,000: Average student loan debt for class of 2010 (The Project on Student Debt)
- $1,800: Average credit card debt for those 20-29 (PNC financial independence survey, March)
- 12.4%: Unemployment rate for those 18-29 (BLS data, March)
- 13: States that require high school students to take a personal finance class (Survey of the States, 2011)
- 60%: 18- to 34 year-olds not keeping a budget (NFCC financial literacy survey, 2012)