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Mich. CUs, Lawmakers Team Up For Financial Literacy
LANSING, Mich.  (5/10/13)--In Michigan, 41 lawmakers signed up to participate in a Financial Literacy Legislative Challenge and joined credit unions statewide for youth financial education events in April, which was Financial Literacy Month, according to the Michigan Credit Union League.

While it is often a challenge to coordinate financial education events to fit both the schools' and the legislators' schedules, participating credit unions understand the importance of the cooperative partnership and worked to schedule and present many events this spring, MCUL said (Michigan Monitor May 6).

Mich. State Rep. Andy Schor (D-Lansing) assists students at Lansing Sexton High School during a "Reality Fair" conducted by CASE CU in Lansing.
Mich. State Rep. Peter Pettalia ( R-Presque Isle) and Missy Cordes of Alpena Alcona Area CU in Alpena talked to two senior classes at Alcona High School April 29 about student loans and using credit cards wisely.

CASE CU in Lansing teamed with state Rep. Andy Schor (D-Lansing) at J.W. Sexton High School on April 19, where students learned real-world money-management skills during a "Mad City Money" reality simulation.

Also participating was Rep. Anthony Forlini (R-Harrison Twp.), who presented at Iroquois Middle School in Macomb Township.

CEO John Buckley of Gerber FCU in Fremont, Mich., and Mich. State Rep. Jon Bumstead (R-Newaygo) discuss money management with students at Fremont High School. (Photos provided by the Michigan Credit Union League)
"Financial education is important no matter what the age and I am thankful that the MCUL supports this message," said Shannon McIntosh, consumer education specialist at Michigan Schools and Government CU in Clinton Township. "It's a wonderful opportunity to be partnered with a local lawmaker."

Forlini and the credit union spoke with three eighth grade classes on the importance of money management.

State Rep. Colleen LaMonte (D-Montague) visited the Muskegon Area Career Tech Center with Sheryl Hogle, director of financial education at HarborLight CU in Whitehall, to participate in the challenge. Financial management/accounting students at the center run their own credit union, The Currency Corner.

State Rep. Jon Switalski (D-Warren) visited a financial literacy class at Fitzgerald High School in Warren. Switalski believes in the value of financial literacy education for all youth, but especially at the high school level, MCUL said. After talking to students, he answered questions about financial literacy and state government and the impact on their lives.

Many questions from students related to college funding, cuts in education programs and the high cost of college and charter schools. Switalski encouraged them to contact the governor, their state senator and himself regarding issues important to them. He also encouraged them to register to vote and exercise that right.

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