Mission Federal Credit Union Donates $1 Million to Support JA Finance Park, a Program of Junior Achievement of San Diego County
Mission Federal Credit Union has donated $1 million and becomes naming sponsor in support of Junior Achievement of San Diego County’s Mission Fed JA Finance Park program, focused on increasing the financial literacy of San Diego high school students.
“One of the ways Mission Fed gives back to the community is through our commitment to financial education,” said Angie Lasagna, Vice President of Community Relations for Mission Fed. “High schools aren’t always able to offer the types of economics courses that help students learn to budget their money. That is where Mission Fed JA Finance Park can play a key role. We want to do our part to help high school students gain the skills they’ll need to manage their money and reach their goals as confident, successful members of the community, and we hope to do this for Mission Fed JA Finance Park in perpetuity.”
The digital curriculum and custom software enable high school students to engage in real-world financial activities, such as online banking and paying bills via Tablet PCs, while being introduced to concepts like insurance, credit and long-term investments. The curriculum also supports real-world simulations where students choose a San Diego job and know their salary, marital status, number of children and their FICO score. Then they shop in the 19 businesses in the Park, making choices on how to budget and live within their means.
Joanne Pastula, President and CEO of Junior Achievement of San Diego County, explained that the Mission Fed JA Finance Park starts in the classroom with teachers and community expert volunteers teaching 6-9 lessons, where students study income, saving, investing and risk management, and credit. Then they go on a one-day field trip to the Park to practice what they’ve learned in a real-world setting. In addition to high school students, nonprofits who offer financial literacy will be welcome to use the Park after hours, on weekends or during holidays when school is not in session.
“We are so honored that Mission Federal Credit Union has come forward as our naming sponsor for this remarkable program,” said Pastula. “Mission Fed has once again shown its passion for community involvement with its ongoing support of Junior Achievement and by becoming the cornerstone of JA Finance Park. Students who enroll in this program will build a foundation for making intelligent, lifelong personal-finance decisions.”
Lasagna added, “The curriculum better prepares students for financial success through technology they’ve become accustomed to using on a daily basis.” She noted that an estimated 44 percent of millennials look at their phones more than six times an hour. “Mission Fed JA Finance Park embraces this trend and focuses on financial literacy education from early childhood through the post-graduate level to develop a diverse talent pool needed for tomorrow’s workforce in our region.”
Established in 2003, JA Finance Park is one of Junior Achievement’s most successful programs. More than 1 million students across the United States have gone through the hands-on program since its inception.
About Mission Federal Credit Union:
Mission Federal Credit Union is a not-for-profit organization providing a wide variety of financial services to meet the needs of its customers. With more than $2.5 billion in assets, over 25 local branches, and more than 174,000 members, Mission Fed is the largest, locally based credit union exclusively serving San Diego County. Mission Fed enhances the lives of its customers through financial education and financial services. In addition, Mission Fed contributes to hundreds of non-profit educational and community organizations. At Mission Fed, your success is our bottom line. All San Diegans are welcome. Federally insured by NCUA. To learn more, visit www.MissionFed.com.
About Junior Achievement of San Diego’s Mission Fed JA Finance Park
Mission Fed JA Finance Park is the evolution of the McGrath Family JA BizTown program, where 5th grade students learn how to work as adults in a simulated business community. JA Finance Park prepares students to begin to plan their next steps after high school. Mission Fed JA Finance Park gives local companies the chance to make a positive, lasting impression on students as they are preparing for their adult lives after high school. For additional information, please visit www.jasandiego.org.
About Junior Achievement of San Diego County
Junior Achievement of San Diego works locally to impact 53,000 students in K-12 classrooms each year. Junior Achievement’s volunteer-based programs teach kids how to get a job, start a business and how money works. For more information on programs in San Diego and Imperial Counties, please visit www.jasandiego.org.