WCAV-WVAW-WAHU | Charlottesville, Virginia | News

Local Organization Teaches Teens To Save

By: Autria Godfrey
By: Autria Godfrey

July 10, 2006

The Piedmont Housing Alliance has long been offering money management classes to adults, but their curriculum is expanding now to younger students. is holding "Money Smarts" classes to teach students the value of a dollar and how to begin preparing for the future.

What are you doing with your money? That's what Piedmont Housing Alliance is hoping to make students aware of. Everything from how to manage a budget to avoiding identity theft was covered for students on the brink of entering the workforce.

"Start saving now, everything you do starting today will make a difference in everything that's going to happen to you later," urged Aisha Quarles, Financial Education director.

This way of thinking is what the Piedmont Housing Alliance is trying to get teenagers to understand. The "Money Smarts" classes target teens, trying to help them understand the importance of early savings.

She believes this generation of students haven't been properly educated on how to save.

"It may be for some of the young people that they don't have that financial role model in their home and if there's no one there to show them or it hasn't been instilled in them to start with, then they just don't know," Quarles continued.

Courtney Commander was one of the students in attendance tonight and her aunt agrees that preparing for the future now is one of the best ways to get ahead.

"Start saving now, and then also to get a good education because the more education they have that increases their earning capacity," Stephanie Commander said.

The instructors of the class understand that the group is entering into the work force and debt almost simultaneously and they feel it's a direct reflection of the characteristics of this generation.

"This is the "now" generation and they want everything that they want--now, and savings is not a priority for them," Quarles said.

Monday night students were taught everything from how to build good credit to how and when to open up different accounts. This was the first meeting for the class and because of overwhelming popularity, they already have another scheduled for August 7th.

The class is a free service to the students thanks to the BAMA works fund that was established by the Dave Matthews Band as well as donations from Wachovia Bank.


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