Washington Federal Receives Financial Education Innovation Award

by Washington Federal Team on April 16, 2015

On April 14, Washington Federal was honored with the Innovation in Financial Education Award presented by NASDAQ and EverFi.  The award recognizes its significant efforts to improve the financial capability of young Americans.

As young adults are continually faced with increasingly complex financial decisions, one of our community giving focuses has been to provide students with the skills and knowledge needed in order to succeed. To this end we’ve partnered with EverFi to bring the financial education program to local students at no cost to schools or taxpayers and has reached over 5,000 students across six states since 2013. The web-based program uses the latest in new media technology – simulations, gaming and adaptive-pathing – to bring complex financial concepts to life for today’s digital generation.

Financial Scholars graduates discuss the importance of financial literacy.

Financial Scholars graduates discussing the importance of financial literacy.

“We’re honored to receive this award from NASDAQ and EverFi. Financial education and literacy is one of Washington Federal’s main community development and charitable giving focuses. Our partnership with EverFi has helped us to bring financial education to more schools throughout our eight-state footprint – all at no cost to the community or the taxpayers,” said Washington Federal’s CRA Officer and Senior Vice President Victor Mizumori.

everfi-award-victor-and-lisa-w-small

Washington Federal’s Lisa Wolf and Victor Mizumori with the award.

A FINRA-funded study released in February 2015 found that students who received rigorous financial education in high school saw increased credit scores and decreased chance of credit delinquency as young adults, compared to their peers who did not receive financial education.

Data collected from nearly 3,000 students who completed the Washington Federal Financial Scholars Program in the 2013-2014 academic year revealed that students’ knowledge gain increased by an average of 34% after interacting with the curriculum.

Administered by teachers in a classroom setting, the web-based course offers over six hours of programming on a variety of financial topics including credit scores, insurance, credit cards, student loans, mortgages, taxes, stocks, savings, 401k’s and other critical concepts that map to national financial literacy standards. The platform uniquely tracks the progress and performance of every student.

We also bring financial literacy to schools through their partnership with Junior Achievement, a nonprofit organization, and their own Save at School program. Junior Achievement provides a series of business, economics and life-skills programs dedicated to enhancing the education of young people. Washington Federal contributes both monetary donations and employee volunteer hours to assist Junior Achievement. Save at School is designed to help elementary-aged students learn the habits of saving at a young age. Through the program, students are able to open a savings account and make deposits from their classroom on designated “Bank Days.”

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