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YUHSD, 1st Bank Yuma celebrate “Innovative Investment” as partnership eclipses 11,000 students educated in financial literacy

1st Bank Yuma, in partnership with nine schools in the southern Arizona area including all six Yuma Union High School District schools, announced that its schools-based financial education program (EverFi) has topped 11,000 students educated on critical financial topics.

1st Bank Yuma President/CEO Terry Frydenlund discovered EverFi at an Arizona Banker’s annual meeting when a representative from the company made a presentation to the CEOs in attendance. “I was intrigued by the program and particularly its delivery method,” Frydenlund recalled. “Since moving to Yuma I have been made aware of the high dropout rate amongst our high school population — getting better now — and being in banking, I felt the bank needed to help.”Student completes EverFi worksheet

Frydenlund had tried the FDIC’s financial literacy program, at 1st Bank Yuma and other banks where he had worked, and their program was not well-received. “The delivery method introduced by EverFi intrigued me and I thought it could be something that the students would gravitate to. Turns out they like this education delivery method quite a bit,” he said. “By providing students with the knowledge and skills they need to make smart financial decisions, we are investing in the future economic well-being of the communities we serve in Yuma and Santa Cruz Counties.”

In addition to all six YUHSD schools, EverFi partnered with Rio Rico, Nogales, San Pasqual Valley high schools this year, and will add Yuma Catholic High School beginning in 2018-19. During the 2017-18 school year, alone, the program saw 20,820 modules completed by students at the nine participating schools, a majority of which came from YUHSD.  

1st Bank Yuma has partnered with EverFi (the leading technology company on the front lines of education's evolution, connecting learning to the real world) to bring the program to local students at no cost to schools, students, or taxpayers. EverFi Financial Literacy Program features an interactive new-media learning platform specifically designed to introduce financial literacy skills.

The six-hour curriculum for high school students is a challenging, but engaging course that aligns with state and national financial education standards. This is a web-based interactive course designed to empower young people with the essential skills needed to make sound financial decisions. Since inception well over 11,000 high school students have worked with the nine modules (Savings, Banking, Payment Types, Credit Scores, Financing Higher Education, Renting vs. Owning, Insurance and Taxes, Consumer Protection and Investing) EverFi curriculum. They have completed more than 70,000 modules that equates to more than 50,000 hours of financial education. The bank believes it is EverFi’s web based interactive content that keeps the students engaged, is very similar to the video games they play. The platform uniquely tracks the progress and performance of every student.

“Financial literacy is such an important part of entering adulthood,” YUHSD Superintendent Gina Thompson said. “It’s tremendous for our students to have an opportunity for a head start on how to better manage their finances through EverFi and our partnership with 1st Bank Yuma. Reaching 10,000 students over the course of the program is pretty remarkable, and really aligns with our mission of having every student college and/or career ready when they graduate.”

Breaking the 11,000 students taught mark was only part of the accomplishment. After taking the EverFi curriculum, students over the years have increased their scores on assessment test between 85 to 95 percent.  These totals are tracked on pre and post assessment tests through the digital platform. With five years already under their belt and plans to continue, the bank envisions educating an entire generation of Yumans. The total figure does not include the K-9 students, college students nor the organizations like Crossroads Mission or Juvenile Hall where the bank provided outreach classes.

1st Bank Yuma's Jeff Byrd talks to students about financial literacy.  About 1st Bank Yuma

1st Bank Yuma was established on September 4th, 2001 as an Arizona State chartered bank, insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. It was founded by a team of Yuma business people along with experienced Yuma bankers to provide the highest level of service to Yuma and Nogales residents. 1st Bank Yuma is ranked 5 Stars by Bauer Financial and is the only locally owned and operated community bank in Yuma County.  Learn more at www.1stbankyuma.com.

About EverFi

EverFi, Inc. is the leading education technology company focused on teaching, assessing, and certifying K-12 and college students in the critical skills they need for life. The company teams with major corporations and foundations to provide the programs at no cost to K-12 schools. Some of America’s leading CEOs and venture capital firms are EverFi investors including Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, Twitter founder Evan Williams, and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt.  Learn more at www.everfi.com.   

Eric Patten
epatten@yumaunion.org