With college tuition on the rise, ACCC announces the release of its financial literacy project to help recent high school graduates prepare for college and develop good spending habits and life-long money management skills.
Boston, MA – April 1, 2014
Leading financial education nonprofit American Consumer Credit Counseling announced today the launch of “30 Tips in 30 Days” as part of the organization’s ongoing efforts to better prepare young Americans for college and independent living. According to a recent study by Sallie Mae, 84 percent of high school students desire more financial education, which is why during April’s National Financial Literacy Month, ACCC will focus its efforts on tackling some of the financial challenges facing younger generations.
“A number of recent studies have exposed the significant need to educate young consumers about the financial decisions they face when graduating high school and entering college,” said Steven Trumble, President and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling. “The findings of these studies, combined with the upward trajectory of college tuition and increased reliance on student loans inspired us to create the “30 Tips in 30 Days” financial literacy project. Knowing how to effectively save money and navigate day-to-day financial decisions during young adulthood ensures a financially healthy future.”
In addition to the growing desire among younger generations for additional financial education, many studies show the palpable need. According to a 2011 survey by Charles Schwab & Co., more than 75 percent of 16- to 18-year-olds say they are financially savvy; however, less than 20 percent are familiar with a 401(k) plan and only 32 percent understand how credit card interest and fees operate.
“Credit, money management, even opening a savings account for the first time can be overwhelming,” said Trumble. “But these are the necessary skills that young Americans need to understand if they want to develop better money management skills at a young age.”
The state of student loans in America is bleak. The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau reports that Americans have $1 trillion in total outstanding student loan debt and 14 percent of those with student loans possess at least one account with overdue charges. Further, two out of five student loan borrowers become delinquent after entering the first five years of their repayment period.
“It’s no secret that financial problems early in life can lead to financial difficulties in adulthood,” Trumble said. “We work with thousands of consumers each year to overcome significant debt and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard someone say they wish they had developed better habits at a younger age, especially for those who are still paying off student loans well into their adulthood.”
A lack of financial literacy education leads to a myriad of problems for those who take out loans to attend college. A 2012 report by Young Invincibles found that about 65 percent of high-debt student loan borrowers did not clearly understand the student loan process and a 2012 study by Accounting Principals found that about one-third of recent graduates wished they had found more scholarships and financial aid options when entering college.
“We cannot stand idly by while our youth continue to navigate the journey between high school and college,” added Trumble. “With adequate information and education, high school students, college students and their parents can make informed decisions and ensure a stable financial future.”
“30 Tips in 30 Days” will focus on ways to save money as a student, from choosing the right college scholarships and opening a bank account to saving money on books and meals. American Consumer Credit Counseling’s certified and experienced counselors offer a variety of financial education, counseling and debt management services to help consumers achieve long-term financial health and stability. You can follow our daily tips on Facebook @TalkingCentsBlog and on Twitter @TalkCentsBlog.
ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization, that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:
- For credit counseling, call 800-769-3571
- For bankruptcy counseling. call 866-826-6924
- For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
- For more information on financial education workshops in New England, call 800-769-3571 x1980
- Or visit us online at ConsumerCredit.com
About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit credit counseling 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial management and debt relief through education, credit counseling, and debt management solutions. ACCC provides individuals with practical debt solutions for solving financial problems and recognizes that consumers’ financial difficulties are often not the result of poor spending habits, but more frequently from extenuating circumstances beyond their control. As one of the nation’s leading providers of financial education and credit counseling services, ACCC’s certified credit advisors work with consumers to help them determine the best plan of action to get out of debt and regain financial stability. ACCC holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is a member of the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies. For more information or to access free financial education resources, log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit TalkingCentsBlog.com.