Financial empowerment isn’t about being rich. When we create a financial cushion for ourselves, we suddenly have room to make mistakes or absorb the curve balls life throws at us. Financial empowerment can be within reach no matter your income. That’s because the first steps aren’t about dollars and cents, they’re about knowledge.
TCU’s Financial Empowerment Program is a free public service to enable people to address their financial challenges and plan for their futures. The program provides free assistance with money management, budgeting, reducing debt, and connecting to safe and low-cost financial products that help build credit, savings, and assets.
A 2014 Federal Reserve report found that students who receive personal financial education had credit scores that were 7 to 29 points higher than those of students who didn’t have access to that information.
At TCU, we believe that learning how to manage money should be part of every student’s education. With Student Rewards Checking, TCU introduces young people age 14 to 23 to the skills they need to establish and maintain financial security — and provides monetary awards for responsible habits.
Students with this account receive $25 when they complete TCU’s Financial Empowerment Program and another $10 if they use the TCU Mobile App, enroll in TCU Online Banking and register for both eStatements and Everyday Savings. Additionally, young people get $10 for each year they don’t overdraw their accounts.
Financial empowerment also means developing an awareness of things like fees associated with withdrawing cash from out-of-network ATMs. At TCU members can use its ATM locator to find 30,000 reduced-fee CO-OP and Alliance One ATMs nationwide.
Following the road to financial empowerment takes practice, to be sure. But when you create a financial plan — or a financial cushion for yourself — you can absorb mistakes or unexpected expenses. You can start to manage your money rather than being managed by it.