Invest in What’s Next


There are many possibilities for students’ life after high school and lots of questions to consider along the way.  “What path is right for me?” “What do I stand to gain?” “What are my funding options for school?”

We have been developing Invest in What’s Next (IIWN), an interactive, online mini-course with the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. Through three lessons, students will explore their options, budget for their future, and build a plan that’s right for them.

We are happy to announce that lesson 1 has been launched and is ready for you to assign to your students!  After completing lesson 1, students will be able to:

  • determine what jobs best fit their personal interests and the education required for those jobs
  • estimate what they want their future lifestyle to be and the income they may need to earn to support that lifestyle
  • identify the benefits of education after high school
  • assess the degree levels and school options for education after high school
  • research education options that meet their goals
  • analyze charts and data in a variety of formats

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Teacher Spotlight: Stan Herder

Our Spotlight series continues this week, where we talk with teachers who are making a difference in the field of economic education.

In today’s installment, we’re talking with Stan Herder, who teaches economics, government, and history at Hawaii Baptist Academy in sunny Honolulu, Hawaii.

Stan didn’t mention it in his responses below, but we’ll brag for him:  He was awarded the 2013-2014 Smart/Maher VFW National Citizenship Education Teacher Award, which is offered by the Hawaii Veterans of Foreign Wars.  The award recognized educators who are active in citizenship education, including topics such as government and economies.

2014.08.14 Teacher Spotlight - Stan Herder 1Stan teaches economics (12th grade), government (9th grade), ancient world history (9th grade), and Hawaiian history (10th – 12th grade).

Here is what he had to say:

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Future leaders hone leadership, financial literacy, resume and interview skills at the Fed

Students talk with Adrian Rodriguez and Susan Sutherland (SF Fed Senior VP, Equal Employment Opportunity, HR, Statistics, Director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion, and Seattle Branch Manager)We’ve been busy at the SF Fed’s Los Angeles Branch!  On Tuesday and Wednesday of last week, 96 youth from the Academy of Business Leadership (ABL) visited for sessions on mentoring, financial literacy lessons, and resume and job interview skills.

Thursday saw the arrival of 42 members from the Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles for a similar experience.  Both events were designed to develop leadership skills and to encourage careers in banking, business, finance, and economics.

In his welcoming remarks to the ABL audience, Roger Replogle, SF Fed Senior Vice President and Los Angeles Branch Manager, advised the young audience: “Learn to run to the fire – that’s where you find opportunity to grow, learn, and help.  Don’t look for the easy path.  Look for the hard one.”  He shared stories of successes and failures, both personal and professional, and lessons learned.

Lise Luttgens, CEO of the Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles, provided welcoming remarks for the Girl Scouts event and stressed that “gender is no barrier to financial literacy and independence.”

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OECD PISA Looks at Students and Money and Asks: What’s the Level of Understanding?

The OECD PISA international assessment of financial literacy released last week reveals that around one in seven students in the 13 OECD participating countries and economies are unable to make even simple decisions about everyday spending, and only one in ten can solve complex financial tasks.

So, to answer the question posed in this post’s title: Not very high.

What was this study about?

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Why it Still Pays to Get a College Degree

Has the high cost of college tuition discouraged your students from considering college a viable option? A new study from our researchers here at the SF Fed suggests that a college degree is still a great investment for the average student.

Three Reasons to Get that Degree

1.  Higher Annual Earnings: Although common knowledge, it’s worth repeating – college graduates, on average, out earn high school graduates year in and year out. In 2011, the difference between annual wages of someone with a four-year degree and a person with a high school degree averaged $20,050. That’s a 61% earnings “premium” for having a college degree (see chart below).

Why it still pays to get a college degree Figure 1

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Why is this blog going to be great for teachers?

Thank you for visiting our blog!  We’re going to be working hard to make this space your go-to spot for economics and personal finance education materials that can be quickly and easily integrated into your existing curriculum.

Although the full list of our materials will remain on our website, this blog will be a space for announcements about our freshest content, exciting upcoming events (both in-person and virtual), and a place for discussion with both us and your colleagues about economics and personal finance education.

We look forward to working with you, and want to know: what kinds of content would you like to see on our blog?  Add a comment!