Last year, Ednium: The Alumni Collective and its alumni partners gathered in full force during the Board of Education meeting where they provided public comment in support of adding financial literacy to high school graduation requirements.
After working with board members, the policy was adopted unanimously, and the real work began.
However, the initial idea to champion a financial literacy campaign started in 2019 when alumni partners came together in Ednium’s Design Lab to identify issues they could impact in public-school education.
Through in-person discussions, coupled with a survey of key stakeholders, the issue that resonated the most was financial literacy. Alumni expressed a lack of understanding on topics such as personal finance, loans, credit cards, and budgeting. After graduation, many were challenged to learn the hard way which oftentimes resulted in long-term consequences that had a ripple effect on their livelihood.
“It was a collective space where alumni imagined what this could look like for future students and asked the question, ‘what do I know now that I wish I knew then?,” says Perla Bustillos, Ednium co-founder and director of operations.
Once the board adopted the policy, the work began to access resources to support the initial goal: integrating the curriculum in all district high schools.