JA Money 101

Financial literacy instruction is necessary for our young people's professional and personal success. 
Without a strong financial grounding they risk making negative, long-term, life-changing financial decisions. Historically, young people in America have not grasped financial literacy skills.
Today, only 13 states require students to take a personal finance or economics course.  "Today's 20 somethings hold an average debt of about $45,000, which includes everything from cars to credit cards to student loans to mortgages, according to a PNC financial independence survey released last month" (USA Today, 4/24/12).
JAWPA operates in a state that ranks 44th out of 50 states for financial literacy (Society for Human Resource Management, 2011).  In today's world, financial intelligence is crucial to success in life, and a child's financial intelligence is the building block for economic independence.  Financial intelligence begins with a basic understanding of money and good money habits. The lifelong benefits of investing the time and financial resources to teach these basic lessons are undeniable. As with any life skill, children without these lessons will pay the consequences of overwhelming debt, financial insecurity and servitude for a lifetime.
Just as every child should be taught to read and write, every child needs a basic economic and financial understanding of the world around them.  Now more than ever, our young people need the tools to be financially literate and understand the important role economic stability will play in their future and the future of our country.
A new partnership between Junior Achievement, the Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA) Society of Pittsburgh and the author of The Missing Semester, Gene Natali, Jr., seeks to stem this tide of financial illiteracy of our young people. 
JA Money 101 is a 6-session high school program which focuses on earning money; spending money wisely through budgeting; saving and investing money; using credit cautiously; and protecting one's personal finances.
This program includes:
  • 5 sessions of JA Personal Finance lessons taught by a JA volunteer
  • A one-hour presentation followed by a Q&A session with a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) from the CFA Society of Pittsburgh in the sixth and final session
  • The opportunity for each student to create a five-year personal financial plan
  • A copy of the book, The Missing Semester, for each student – A required reading as part of the course work
Following participation in the program, students will be able to:
  • Recognize the fundamental elements of their personal finances: earnings, saving and investing, budgeting, credit, risk management, and giving
  • Apply these fundamental elements to a personal financial plan that allows them to set specific goals for their lifelong financial needs and desired quality of life
Pillars of Student Success Entrepreneurship:  Financial-Literacy:  Work-Readiness: 
Program Implementation Program Grade-Level
Classroom-Based High School
Program Concepts Program Skills

Program Sessions