The following is the acceptance speech of the NFCC National Poster Contest Winner--Jordan Lane-Palmer, which was given during this year's Jump$tart Coalition Annual Awards Dinner. Jordan's talk embodies many of the concepts we hear during Financial Literacy Month and says them as only a young person can.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen. My name is Jordan Lane-Palmer. I stand here tonight so grateful to have been chosen as the National Winner of the 2011 Financial Literacy Poster Contest. When I heard about the theme I was excited to know that it coincided with my interests. Since an early age I have had a passion for superheroes, comic books and action figures. In one of my favorite movies Spiderman, Uncle Ben reminded Peter that, “with great power comes great responsibility”.
This idea can be applied to money management.
When I illustrated these ideals I wanted the superhero to be young to show that even at a young age people can save or rescue money. I wanted to use everyday references to show how we have encounters with superheroes every day. Superheroes like firefighters, soldiers, preachers, teachers, doctors, and ordinary citizens like me and you. The mask shows that the identity of the superhero is not important but the actions that they are taking to save money are more important. This also shows that anybody can become a superhero, it is not necessary to be bitten by a radioactive spider or put on a magical ring that gives superhuman abilities to its user, but all that is needed to become a super hero is to just make smart decisions about managing your money. It starts with setting goals, creating a budget and saving. Like with any superhero’s journey this is not easy, but the results are certainly worth the effort. I believe that personification is a wonderful tool and that is why I chose to embody Money in the form of a little girl.
Money is delicate, easily manipulated and it has to be guided and managed to become strong and self sufficient. If not properly managed it can be confused and lose its way. But it takes a noble super hero to save money and take the proper steps to a brighter future. The city’s buildings represent several ways to mismanage money and good credit. Showing the city burning down illustrates that if immediate action is not taken to save Money it could be disastrous. The consequences could take years to recover from. On the contrary, the green grass depicts continuous prosperity as they exit the city. Once you decide to escape from destructive spending habits and follow a stable path for money management you move closer to fulfilling your dreams for you and your family.
I believe that financial literacy is important for everyone to know, especially for young people. Deciding to be aware of spending habits, saving money, making smart money management choices is really important. I have learned to deposit money consistently into my credit union and let it accumulate and not to spend it all. By saving my allowance for about three months it allowed me to purchase a robot modeling kit that I really wanted. I still have it today to remind me of the benefits of saving for short-term goals. I realize that by applying the same principles of hard work and dedication I can achieve a long-term goal of going to college. I am glad that saving money was instilled in me at a young age.
I want to thank God first and foremost, for blessing me with my talent and blessing me with a loving supportive family. I would like to thank my Mom and Grandmom for teaching me the proper appreciation for money. I would also like to thank The National Foundation for Credit Counseling for providing this wonderful opportunity. To my local agency, CredAbility, who selected my poster to be submitted to the national judging, and last but not least Jump$tart for hosting such a wonderful awards dinner. Again thank you all so much.
Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy