WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., Aug. 30, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- As students begin the 2016-17 school-year, BB&T today announced the expansion of its Financial Foundations program, powered by EverFi, from 10 to 15 states. The web-based program successfully teaches high school students how to comprehend and work with the principles of personal finance at no cost to schools or taxpayers.
Since its implementation in 2010, more than 326,000 students have taken the BB&T Financial Foundations course. It is used in more than 1,000 schools where students have logged more than 914,300 hours of learning. After taking the BB&T Financial Foundations course, students on average increased their test score to 88 percent from 47 percent, or improved to a B+ from an F. In addition, students' understanding of how to maintain a positive credit score nearly doubled, and their comprehension of how to apply for financial aid to help pay for college increased 85 percent.
The state-of-the-art, web-based learning platform consists of 3-D gaming and simulated environments, avatars, Twitter-like messaging tools and videos. The program, which is incorporated into existing school curriculum, teaches high school juniors and seniors financial concepts integrated in nine basic online modules.
"Throughout the year, we have all learned lessons that we will carry throughout our lives. From starting college, having children, and starting 401(k) plans," said Aida Siegal, a 2016 Stranahan High School Senior in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. "Through BB&T Financial Foundations, we now have a base of financial literacy education."
The curriculum includes topics such as credit scores, savings and investments, 401(k) offerings, stock exchanges, mortgages, the Federal Reserve, taxes and insurance. In addition, the program allows instructors to track individual and group performance. Upon completion, students are BB&T/EverFi certified and receive a certificate during a formal ceremony.
"Student reception to BB&T Financial Foundations has been overwhelmingly positive," said Brittany Brown, BB&T Student Leadership Program manager. "At all levels, students have a real desire to better understand how to manage their personal finances, take control of their financial future and become smart consumers and investors."
According to the recently released National Capability Study by the FINRA Foundation, an estimated two-thirds of Americans could not pass a basic financial literacy test. In addition, the percentage of those passing the test has fallen consistently since the financial crisis to 37 percent last year, from 42 percent in 2009.
"If we are going to remain an economically competitive nation, it is imperative that young people understand how the economy works and how to achieve financial security in their own lives," Georgia State Schools Superintendent Richard Woods said. "The BB&T Financial Foundations program will help us accomplish both of those goals – and it's a great example of how we can work together as a community to improve the educational opportunities that we provide to our children."
States now being added to the BB&T Financial Foundations program include New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia. The states already participating include Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.
"BB&T has set an unprecedented best-in-class standard for high school financial education at a depth and scale that no other large regional financial institution has done before. This kind of leadership starts at the top," EverFi CEO Tom Davidson said. "BB&T CEO Kelly King has been a visionary on financial empowerment and those values are pervasive throughout the organization. We are grateful for this expanded partnership and the positive impact it will have on these important communities."
BB&T supports financial education in many other ways:
- The BB&T Financial Foundations program for adults is designed to help individuals take more control of their financial lives. Free interactive courses with financial information and assistance are available at BBT.com for clients and the program is also available internally to BB&T's 37,000 associates.
- A college version of Financial Foundations, Transit, is currently offered to students at nine partnering schools
- The BB&T Bank Bus is a mobile marketing and educational center with computer workstations, internet access, ATMs and classroom furnishings to provide financial education and lending information at high schools, college campuses, community events and for large employers
- Additional helpful financial tips, informative articles, and planning calculators are available for free at BB&T's Learn & Plan site on BBT.com
As of June 30, 2016, BB&T is one of the largest financial services holding companies in the U.S. with $221.9 billion in assets and market capitalization of $29.0 billion. Based in Winston-Salem, N.C., the company operates 2,249 financial centers in 15 states and Washington, D.C., and offers a full range of consumer and commercial banking, securities brokerage, asset management, mortgage and insurance products and services. A Fortune 500 company, BB&T is consistently recognized for outstanding client satisfaction by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Greenwich Associates and others. More information about BB&T and its full line of products and services is available at BBT.com.
About EverFi, Inc.
EverFi, Inc. is the education technology leader that empowers K-12, higher education, and adult learners with the skills needed to be successful in life and work. With investments from some of technology's most innovative leaders including Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, Twitter founder Evan Williams, and venture investors New Enterprise Associates and Rethink Education, EverFi has built the most comprehensive digital learning platform that serves K-12, higher education, and adult learners. EverFi partners with over 3,300 customers and 20,000 K-12 schools to bring its innovative learning platform to learners across the country. Learn more at everfi.com.
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SOURCE BB&T Corporation