Maine credit union educators from across the state gathered at the Credit Union Service Center in Westbrook for the 2nd Annual Financial Literacy Conference last week. The day opened with a welcome from Jake Holmes, the Financial Literacy Outreach Coordinator for the Maine Credit Union League, who then introduced the first speaker of the day, Michelle Anderson, President of Junior Achievement Maine.
After a self-knowledge treasure hunt, Michelle discussed Junior Achievement’s purpose to inspire, prepare, and empower young people to succeed in a global economy. Michelle welcomed credit union staff from all over Maine to collaborate on the work-readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy programs that inspire students to dream big and reach their potential.
“I think the more financial literacy efforts around the state, the better,” stated Anderson. “The Financial Fitness Fairs the credit unions provide are amazing and we hope to strengthen our relationship with the credit unions this year.”
The Maine Credit Union League’s Jake Holmes stated the importance of financial education in Maine. “This country has a major financial literacy problem, with only five states having a personal finance requirement in high school. Maine is not one of those states, which is why all that you do in your credit unions, area schools, communities, and beyond is so important and appreciated.”
Holmes led a discussion about his new role as the Financial Literacy Outreach Coordinator, followed by some tips on reaching the younger generations on financial literacy efforts. With tips on utilizing visual-based platforms, being authentic, and engaging with nostalgia-centric outreach, Holmes shared his insight on successfully educating both Millennials and Generation-Z.
Yellow Light Breen, President/CEO of the Maine Development Foundation, was the final speaker of the conference. Breen reinforced the need for financial education, while detailing Maine’s current and projected economic climate.
“Knowing where Maine will be tomorrow gives us an idea as to where we should be educating today,” said a conference attendee.