Hands-on Financial Literacy Program Looks to Encourage Growth Beyond the Classroom

In an era where high school-aged students are susceptible to facing some of life’s most difficult financial decisions, researchers at the University of Chicago and the Magnetar Capital Foundation have created a unique and comprehensive financial education program to develop positive behavior.

finEDge offers a combination of content and a pedagogical approach that is rooted in principles of learning science and behavioral change research. It is designed to teach in ways students learn best, fostering experiential learning and discussion. Its seven modules cover financial decision-making, saving and spending, borrowing, earning, investing, managing risk and financing education.

“A comprehensive, research-based program is essential for all high-school students to better understand and navigate the financial system,” said Rebecca Maxcy, director of the UChicago Financial Education Initiative.

In an effort to equip the next generation with the necessary financial literacy skills, Maxcy and her team along with the Magnetar Capital Foundation – under their joint partnership Magnetar Capital UChicago Financial Education Initiative – have partnered with Kendall Hunt Publishing Company to offer finEDge’s one-semester course.

“finEDge is the latest addition to our line of programs that encourage growth beyond the classroom,” said Charley Cook, vice president of Kendall Hunt K-12. “We are proud to provide teachers with the necessary tools to support diverse student backgrounds while focusing on a topic as important as financial literacy.”

The goal of finEDge is for students to leave the program with an integrated, self-reinforcing foundation of productive financial decision-making skills, attitudes, and knowledge – that prepare them for long-term success as adults.

“Kendall Hunt is well equipped to leverage its resources to bring finEDge to more teachers and students across the country,” said Maxcy.

With 33% of American adults recognizing that their level of financial knowledge keeps them from making financial progress and 80% saying they were never given an opportunity to learn about personal finance, finEDge is making access to resources easier and accessible for all.

“You cannot escape finance – it underpins everything in life,” said Alec Litowitz, founder and CEO of Magnetar Capital. “We firmly believe that financial education is a right, not a privilege, and are excited to partner with Kendall Hunt to give students and teachers nationwide access to this critical skill-set through the best-in-class finEDge curriculum.”

The UChicago Financial Education Initiative is working with the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Chicago to advance their research.

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