Some area students will get a free education in how to manage their money. The First National Bank of Hope is working with Banzai, a national award-winning financial literacy program, to make the curriculum available to seven schools in the Hope area free.
“Banzai is a web-based financial literacy program. Kids have their own bank accounts, and they work through assignments that are based on real life,” Morgan Vandagriff, co-founder of Banzai, said. “But because The First National Bank of Hope is sponsoring it, local schools get it for free. More than ever it’s important that kids develop sound financial skills to prepare them for the real world. The First National Bank of Hope realizes that, and they’re doing something about it.”
Banzai is an interactive, online program which aligns with state curriculum requirements for personal finance education. It has become the largest program of its kind, servicing more than 40,000 teachers an is available in all 50 states.
“We are happy to have found a program that will help students learn how to budget and understand the financial responsibility that comes with growing up,” said Danielle Andrew, Vice President of the First National Bank of Hope.
The First National Bank of Hope has offered time, money, industry experience, and a variety of bank resources to help local schools teach personal finance in the classroom. Students using the program are exposed to real-life scenarios where they learn to pay bills and balance a budget — but it’s not always easy. Students must learn to manage unexpected expenses such as parking tickets, interest charges and overdraft fees. The educational program also introduces students to auto loans, bank statements entertainment costs, savings and more.
“Too often students get out of school and they just aren’t ready for the financial roller coasters life can give us,” Vandagriff said. “Banzai teaches students to navigate those twists and turns and come out on top. We’re excited to work with The First National Bank of Hope to improve financial literacy in local schools.”