Credit union offering financial education to students – cash included



Estimated reading time: 3-4 minutes

For young people, there is no shortage of financial advice. Parents, grandparents, friends, and social media influencers are always ready to offer up their own personal secrets to financial success. Inundated with all this unsolicited advice, today’s high school and college students seem to be learning at least one financial lesson: Talking costs nothing.

In fact, young people, including those categorized as Millennials and Gen Z, have a general sense of mistrust towards the financial system and traditional channels of financial advice. Unfortunately, turning away from these channels has not shielded America’s youth from money-related stress. A recent Deloitte millennial survey found that around two-thirds of Millennials and Gen Z respondents worry or often become stressed about their personal financial situation.

A local credit union is trying to change all that by putting their money in their mouths and giving students $100 cash and hands-on financial education.

Introducing the Utah First Savings for Success Program

Utah First has launched a new initiative that helps high school and college students learn about personal finance, and offers the one thing many students need more than advice: cash.

The Savings for Success program is simple. Any student, whether attending high school, college, trade school, or vocational school, can open an account with Utah First and they will immediately receive a $100 free deposit. To combat the skepticism that often accompanies young people, Utah First has kept the program unmistakably simple – no frills, no hassle, and no frustration because there are absolutely no strings attached.

Credit union offering financial education to students - cash included
Photo: Anton_Ilchenko/

Ongoing support through the Cash for College program

$100 free is a great start for young people in Utah, but for most students in the state, a great start will only get them so far. With college costs rising in the state, many will feel even greater financial pressure once they start paying tuition.

Fortunately, Utah First goes beyond an initial deposit to provide ongoing support for students. Through its Cash for College program, the credit union awards a $1,000 scholarship to 25 of its student members each term. Members of caisses who have declared their student status are automatically eligible each term.

Financial advice on demand

Only after building trust with its young members does Utah First attempt to offer financial advice. As part of its commitment to serving local communities, the credit union takes a unique approach to financial education. Instead of giving unsolicited financial advice to young people, Utah First provides on-demand, user-focused learning opportunities.

The organization has created simple and engaging content that students can browse at their own pace and according to their own level of interest – and it hardly feels like education. The material is engaging, interesting and filled with information that is particularly relevant to young people. With a curriculum perfectly suited to young students, Utah First has had the opportunity to provide basic financial education at many high schools along the Wasatch Front.

A head start on the path to sound finances

Young people are anxious about their financial future. But, with a general distrust of the financial system and a relentless flow of unsolicited advice, they don’t always know where to turn for financial education. Through a variety of unique programs, Utah First attempts to earn back that trust by pairing its educational content with free money. In doing so, the credit union helps high school and college students get a $100 advance on the path to sound financial decisions.

If you’re a student (or know someone who is) and want to claim your free $100, visit the Utah First Credit Union website today.

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