Resource Center: Funding & Recognition

Awards: Member Spotlight

Congratulations to past winners of the Outstanding Educational Program Award!

The call for nominations opens in June 2017.

2016: The University of Utah Personal Money Management Center (Ann House & Tiffany Davis)

The goal of the campus program is to provide exceptional personal finance education to our University students so they are able enroll and be successful in a local Individual Development Account (IDA) matched savings program. By partnering with the community IDA program, they assist low- to moderate-income students to save a portion of their income and get a matched grant to pay for an entire semester of school. This helps University of Utah students who may be struggling financially to graduate. Additionally, the program's purpose is to teach money management skills that will assist the student as they continue to make consumer decisions beyond college to achieve lifelong successful financial outcomes. The deliverable is an approved interactive and engaging eight-hour personal finance course which meet one of the requirements to enter the savings program. The center worked with local and national IDA partners on the course to assure that its reliability and content would get the endorsement of the state’s funder of the IDA program, Assets for Independence (AFI). The course is taught on campus and in-between classes such as during fall and spring break, to connect as many students as possible into this program.  

2015: IU Money Smart$ (Phil Schuman & Morgan McMillan) 

The Office of Financial Literacy’s IU MoneySmarts program is designed to be innovative and to make talking finances approachable to students. Their website,, contains 50 lessons on different financial topics relevant to college students that are released at “decision times” for students to provide an opportunity for “just-in-time” education. Each lesson is approximately 3 – 5 minutes and is written in a friendly manner as to not make the content overwhelming. In addition, an episode of the “How Not to Move Back in With Your Parents” podcast accompanies each lesson. The podcast features financial personality Pete the Planner and IU student (now alumnus) Alex Eaton as they talk about the financial topic for 8 – 10 minutes. The conversation is casual and sometimes off the wall, by design, to again reiterate that learning about finances does not have to be overwhelming or boring. The podcast format allows for students to pick up financial information on the way to/from class.

Their marketing efforts make financial education fun and make the program unique. Their current campaign focuses on “defeating the debt monster,” and features ads university-wide that create a call to action for students.  With 8 different campuses to whom they provide financial education, they recognize that the demographics of students on each campus is different. With this in mind, they have developed a well-rounded program that appeals to all different types of learners. In the first two years of implementation, the Office of Financial Literacy has been credited with decreasing student loan borrowing at Indiana University by 16% (or $44 Million).

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