February 4, 2015
Detroit, MI – February 4, 2015 – Lions tight end Eric Ebron joined Michigan Treasurer Kevin Clinton, the Michigan Jump$tart Coalition and Visa Inc. in the Wolverine State today to tackle head on the issue of financial literacy improvement among Michigan's youth. They announced an expansion of the statewide effort to improve the money management skills of high school and middle school students with Financial Football, a free educational video game and classroom curriculum developed by Visa Inc. The game, already distributed by the Treasurer's office to every public middle school and high school in Michigan will now, for the first time in any state, be distributed by the Student Financial Services Bureau located within the Michigan Department of Treasury to every public library and Boys & Girls Club statewide. Jump$tart and Visa are working with the state treasurer to share the financial information and skills with students.
Treasurer Clinton kicked off this financial literacy campaign at the NFL/YET – Boys & Girls Club at the Dick & Sandy Dauch Campus in Detroit today with help from Eric Ebron, Michigan Jump$tart and Visa. Ebron and Treasurer Clinton rolled up their sleeves and led teams of students in a hard-fought, high-energy game of Financial Football. Earlier Ebron shared his personal experiences on the importance of money management with students.
"Financial Football is a great way to get students interested in personal finance and gives them a financial playbook they can use the rest of their lives," said Michigan Treasurer, Kevin Clinton. "This is a valuable program and an exciting partnership between my office, Visa and the NFL. It's is exciting to make Michigan the first state to extend this program beyond our schools and into our public libraries and Boys & Girls Clubs."
"Managing money is a lot more complex than simply balancing a checkbook. It is important to teach students about the significance of their personal finances," James Studinger, Chair of Michigan Jump$tart said. "I thank the NFL and Visa for creating this program – another tool for students to use."
The centerpiece of Visa's nationwide educational initiative with the NFL and NFL PLAYERS, Financial Football helps students and adults tackle their financial futures. The game is accompanied by a classroom curriculum.
"Kids need to learn to make smart money management decisions early in life," said Eric Ebron, Detroit Lions tight end. "It takes the combined efforts of parents, teachers and mentors within the community to give teenagers a strong background in personal finance."
Available online a www.michigan.financialfootball.com, Financial Football puts students' fiscal knowledge to the test in an online simulation game environment by combining the structure and rules of the NFL with financial education questions of varying difficulty. Visa has also released the game as a free iPhone app on iTunes, along with an optimized HD iPad version.
"For over a decade, Visa has been committed to promoting financial literacy and we are proud to assist Treasurer Clinton, and the Michigan Jump$tart Coalition in their continuing efforts to strengthen financial education," said Nat Sillin, Head of U.S. financial education, Visa Inc.
This launch is part of a national educational campaign with Visa, the NFL and NFL PLAYERS, now in its eighth season. Since 2006, Visa has reached agreements with forty-five states and the District of Columbia to distribute Financial Football to every high school and middle school in those states, including Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Financial Football is part of Practical Money Skills for Life (www.practicalmoneyskills.com) a free, award-winning financial education program that reaches millions of people around the world each year. Launched in 1995, the program is now available in ten languages in thirty countries. At Practical Money Skills for Life, educators, parents and students can access free educational resources including personal finance articles, games, lesson plans and more. Visa also runs What's My Score (www.whatsmyscore.org), a leading higher education consumer awareness program.
Visa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions, and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable electronic payments. We operate one of the world's most advanced processing networks – VisaNet – that is capable of handling more than 56,000 transaction messages a second, with fraud protection for consumers and assured payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: pay now with debit, pay ahead of time with prepaid or pay later with credit products. For more information, visit usa.visa.com/about-visa, visacorporate.tumblr.com and @VisaNews.