Society for Financial Education & Professional Development and Carver Bank Partner to Reduce Financial Literacy Gap for Students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities
Program Teaches Critical Personal Financial Skills at Howard University, Medgar Evers College, and the University of the District of Columbia.
Carver is the first Minority Depository Institution to support the SFE&PD Student Ambassador Program at HBCUs.
NEW YORK AND ALEXANDRIA, VA. – FEBRUARY 8, 2021 – To address a financial literacy knowledge gap in communities of color, The Society for Financial Education and Professional Development, Inc. (“SFE&PD”) and Carver Federal Savings Bank (“Carver”) today announced a partnership to teach personal financial skills to students at three historically Black colleges and universities (“HBCUs”).
One of SFE&PD’s goals is to increase African Americans’ financial and investment knowledge to close America’s wealth gap. For example, a recent Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis study states that only 6.5% of African American households own stocks, bonds, or mutual funds, compared to 25.3 for white families. If communities of color are to build wealth, proactive steps must be taken in the formative college years to educate students about becoming wiser with their money.
Medgar Evers College, Howard University, and the University of the District of Columbia are the HBCUs participating in the partnership. To combat challenges young people of color face in building wealth, SFE&PD initiated a Student Ambassador Program to train HBCU students to teach their peers about making smarter personal finance decisions. Many HBCU students come from low-to-moderate income families where money management is not regularly discussed or taught. The SFE&PD training sessions teach essential personal financial skills, focusing on saving, investing, banking, budgeting, credit and student loan management, and financial goal-setting.
“Thanks to our partnership with Carver, we can expand the program’s reach and teach more students the financial skills they need to increase economic prosperity throughout their lives,” said Ted Daniels, SFE&PD Founder and President. “These skills help to level the playing field for diverse students who often do not have access to information or a support system to make informed financial choices. Financial literacy during the crucial college years fosters long-term economic equality.”
Michael T. Pugh, President and CEO of Carver, agrees that financial education is a crucial tool to help college students from communities of color achieve long-term economic success. “Carver is proud to work with SFE&PD in a groundbreaking partnership with three HBCUs to advance financial skill-building and economic empowerment for the next generation of leaders,” Pugh said. “Investing in the Student Ambassador Program gives HBCU students a solid foundation for developing their financial health and the opportunity to become champions of financial education in their local communities.”
The pilot program sponsored by Carver supports SFE&PD’s financial literacy initiatives. Carver also provides educational tools such as iPad teaching tablets for the Ambassadors and access to Carver’s leaders to increase the economic engagement of HBCU students. With guidance from SFE&PD financial educators and business school professors at the three HBCUs, the Student Ambassadors are trained to teach personal finance classes to their peers and run events for students and local community members.
A rising number of HBCU students face financial difficulties due to the economic challenges stemming from the pandemic. Two Howard University business school professors, who advise the SFE&PD program, say that financial education is crucial for the long-term economic well-being of minority students.
“It is more important than ever for Howard University students to learn financial literacy principles so that they can effectively manage their money during and after college,” said Lynne J. Kelly, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Finance. “College students face increasingly complex financial decisions. Many students have higher debt levels today than previous generations. It is also far too easy for college students to get into financial trouble, given the barrage of online shopping, gambling, and trading options at their fingertips. I believe the partnership between the SFE&PD and Carver is a step in the right direction to alleviating these financial stress points.”
“Based on a 2018 Federal Reserve Bank survey on consumer finances, 40 percent of Americans do not have $400 for an emergency expense. These financial worries are even worse within communities of color,” said Debby Lindsey-Taliefero, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Economics. “That’s why we are pleased to work with SFE&PD and Carver Bank on this crucial program to equip Howard University students with the skills to teach their peers at this important point in their financial journeys. This program is providing minority students with a roadmap for financial well-being that will last well beyond their college years.”
About The Society for Financial Education and Professional Development
For more than 23 years, SFE&PD, based in the Washington, D.C. area, has served as an award-winning financial literacy and professional development nonprofit teaching financial skills to people of all ages and backgrounds with a focus on underserved communities and HBCU college students. SFE&PD is led by President and Founder Ted Daniels, a leader in the global financial literacy movement. Learn more at www.sfepd.org. Connect with SFE&PD on social media: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.
About Carver Bancorp, Inc.
Carver Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: CARV) is the holding company for Carver Federal Savings Bank, a federally chartered stock savings bank. Headquartered in Harlem, NY, Carver was founded in 1948 to serve African American communities whose residents, businesses, and institutions had limited access to mainstream financial services. The U.S. Treasury Department has designated Carver as a Community Development Financial Institution (“CDFI”) because of its community-focused banking services and dedication to its local community’s economic viability and revitalization. Carver is one of the largest African- and Caribbean-American managed banks in the United States. The Bank recently expanded its online presence to include consumer checking and savings accounts across nine states, from Massachusetts to Virginia, and Washington, D.C. For further information, please visit the Company’s website at www.carverbank.com. Be sure to connect with Carver on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
Ginie Lynch for SFE&PD
Michael Herley for Carver Bank