Colorado student takes reins thanks to personal finance class
Great-West awards 25 teachers across the state $5,000 grants to teach financial literacy
GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo., May 8, 2012 – 17-year-old Samantha L. Vaughan had wanted a horse since she was a tot. But like a lot of households, Vaughan’s family couldn’t afford one. Thanks to a personal finance class Vaughan took at Arapahoe High School this past school year, she learned about setting goals and now owns Bubba, a 9-year-old tri-paint draft mix.
“I had wanted a horse for as long as I can remember,” Vaughan said. By setting goals, Vaughan stayed focused on her plan to buy one. Her first step was to get a job and start saving. “I’m so grateful for the personal finance class. I’m more aware of how I spend the money I earn,” she said. “My biggest surprise was that if I plan out my goals, anything is possible.”
Heather Greenwood taught the personal finance class Vaughan took as a junior. Greenwood was a 2011-2012 school year recipient of a $5,000 grant from Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company (Great-West) through the company’s Great-West Great-Teachers® program, a financial literacy grant initiative created in partnership with the Colorado Jump$tart Coalition. Great-West and Jump$tart introduced the grant initiative last year to promote financial education among students in Colorado’s P-12 schools. Since then, the company and nonprofit organization have encouraged teachers statewide to apply for a $5,000 grant. A team of Great-West and Jump$tart financial literacy experts reviews the applications and selects 25 grant winners each school year.
Great-West and Jump$tart recently announced the 25 Colorado teachers who will receive $5,000 grants for the 2012-2013 school year. They are:
The grants are used to fund supplies, curriculum, technology, professional development, and/or initiate other financial education programs in the classroom.
“As a financial services company, we see firsthand the importance of financial literacy,” said Mitchell Graye, president and chief executive officer of Great-West. “By assisting teachers with financial education programs in their classrooms, we can equip Colorado youth with the skills they need to achieve their financial goals.”
CJ Juleff, executive director, Colorado Jump$tart Coalition, said, “The need for personal financial literacy has never been greater. We are proud to partner with Great-West to ensure educators have access to a variety of resources to implement quality personal finance programs in their classrooms.”
Great-West will honor the 2012-2013 school year award recipients and their guests at a June 13 dinner at the University of Denver’s Fritz Knoebel School of Hospitality Management.
Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company, headquartered in metro Denver, serves its customers through a range of group retirement savings products and services, individual retirement accounts, life insurance and annuities, and business-owned life insurance. It is an indirect, wholly owned subsidiary of Great-West Lifeco Inc. and “A Member of the Power Financial Corporation Group of Companies”®.
About Colorado Jump$tart Coalition
Colorado Jump$tart Coalition, a nonprofit organization with 40 organizations and individuals representing business, government and education throughout Colorado, is focused on improving the personal financial literacy of Colorado youth. Colorado Jump$tart provides engaging and practical professional development for Colorado educators on a variety of financial literacy topics and actively raises the awareness of the need for personal financial literacy.
Director, Corporate Communications
Colorado Jump$tart Coalition
Manager, Corporate Social Responsibility