Nearly 200 Houston-area students learn how to get in the game with Business of Sports program Program puts young people on exciting career path

-- BBVA Compass, Junior Achievement, Houston Dynamo and Dynamo Charities partner

-- Career day helps teens plan for a future in sports management or financial services industries

HOUSTON, Oct. 24, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Nearly 200 juniors and seniors from six area high schools participated in the Business of Sports program presented by BBVA Compass, the Houston Dynamo, Dynamo Charities (the charitable arm of the Houston Dynamo), and Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas today at Hilton Americas downtown.

During the program, bank executives, a former Dynamo player and sports management experts talked about their education and career paths. Students learned about every facet of pursuing careers in the sports management and financial services industries — from selling game-day tickets to managing professional athletes' money. They heard from people who specialize in marketing, banking and the financing of major venues such as BBVA Compass Stadium.

"It is extremely satisfying to give a student a new career to dream about and the tools to make that dream a reality," said BBVA Compass Houston City President Mark Montgomery. "At BBVA Compass, we believe it is our responsibility as a financial institution to help build a better future for the people in our communities and to help them bank responsibly. Zeroing in on young people to teach them about finances and smart career choices is one way to have a big impact."

After a day of learning about the business side of sports, students got the chance to enjoy a Houston Dynamo match against Honduras' Olimpia Tuesday night at BBVA Compass Stadium.

"Junior Achievement's programs help students make critical connections between what they learn in school and life after graduation," said Rick Franke, president of Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas. "As Junior Achievement continues to work toward improving high-school graduation rates, engaging key partners — like BBVA Compass, the Houston Dynamo and Dynamo Charities — helps us deliver these experiences to young people."

The Business of Sports program launched last month and Tuesday's event was part of a multi-pronged approach to educating students about workforce readiness and financial literacy.

The first part was a financial literacy program presented by BBVA Compass employee volunteers featuring Junior Achievement's personal finance program and incorporating elements of Get Smart About Credit, the bank's signature financial education program for high school juniors and seniors. Students also will get a chance to be mentored by bank executives as part of the program.

"I'm learning about taxes, insurance and the main thing — investments," said Christian Mejia, a 17-year-old Southwest High School student. "It definitely motivates me to study so I can get out there in the workforce and get a higher salary and put this knowledge to use."

The other schools that participated in the program were: Chavez High School, Milby High School, Reagan High School, Lee High School and Dekaney High School.

The Business of Sports program is part of the Building a Better Houston campaign launched by BBVA Compass, the Houston Dynamo and Dynamo Charities before the May opening of BBVA Compass Stadium. The partnership resulted in a series of community-improvement projects, including the renovation of three East End homes, a recycling drive, a 5K Fun Run and a financial education and reading program.

During the BBVA Compass Dynamo Charities Cup held in May, proceeds were raised to fund the Business of Sports program.

About BBVA Group

BBVA is a customer-centric global financial services group founded in 1857. The Group has a solid position in Spain, is the largest financial institution in Mexico, and has leading franchises in South America and the Sunbelt region of the United States. Its diversified business is geared toward high-growth markets and relies on technology as a key sustainable competitive advantage. BBVA ranks among the leading eurozone banks in terms of return on equity and efficiency. Corporate responsibility is at the core of its business model. BBVA fosters financial education and inclusion, and supports scientific research and culture. It operates with the highest integrity, a long-term vision and applies best practices. The Group is present in the main sustainability indexes. More information about the BBVA Group can be found at www.bbva.com.

About BBVA Compass

BBVA Compass is a Sunbelt-based financial institution that operates more than 709 branches, including 368 in Texas, 93 in Alabama, 79 in Arizona, 65 in California, 45 in Florida, 38 in Colorado and 21 in New Mexico. BBVA Compass ranks among the top 20 largest U.S. commercial banks based on deposit market share and ranks among the largest banks in Alabama (2nd), Texas (4th) and Arizona (5th). BBVA Compass has been recognized as one of the leading Small Business Administration lenders and ranked third in American Banker's 2012 reputation study of the leading 30 banks in the U.S. Additional information about BBVA Compass can be found at www.bbvacompass.com.

Editor's Note:
BBVA Compass is a trade name of Compass Bank. Compass Bank, member FDIC.

About Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas

Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas is the greater Houston area's largest organization dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in a global economy. Through a dedicated volunteer network of 12,000 adult role models, JA of Southeast Texas provides in-school and after-school programs for students in grades K-12 which focus on entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy. Today, JA of Southeast Texas reaches 245,000 students in more than 900 schools.  For more information, visit www.jahouston.org.

About the Houston Dynamo

The Houston Dynamo are a Major League Soccer club that has won two MLS Cup championships and three conference championships in its first six seasons and qualified to represent the United States in international competition five times, including in the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League. For more information, log on to www.HoustonDynamo.com or call (713) 276-7500.

About Dynamo Charities

Dynamo Charities Inc., presented by Halliburton Charitable Foundation, is a 501(c)(3) organization and the charitable arm of the Houston Dynamo. It believes in using the power of the Dynamo and the sport of soccer to support the Houston community. For more information, log on to HoustonDynamo.com/Charities or call (713) 276-7574.

SOURCE BBVA Compass



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