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US Bank Scholarship program boosts financial confidence and knowledge


US Bank Scholarship program boosts financial confidence and knowledge
The US Bank Student Scholarship Program aims to provide financial wellness concepts and information to college and college-bound students at a critical stage in their lives. According to a new study designed and conducted by Concentrix, the program is doing just that, giving students more confidence and knowledge about their finances.

Students in the U.S. Bank scholarship program complete a series of free online modules covering topics ranging from credit score building to emergency savings, and then enter a sweepstakes to win up to $14,000 in scholarship funds. The ten-year-old program has seen an increase in participation each year, with $45,000 in scholarships awarded each year.

“The results of this study validate the benefits of financial education in helping students become financially confident and knowledgeable,” said Kaori Yamada, senior vice president of financial education for U.S. Bank.

“We share these learnings with others and invite them to extend access to financial education.”

The following are the key findings from the study, which was commissioned by US Bank and evaluated students before and after completing the online modules:
  1. Financial incentives and scholarships encourage students to participate in financial education. The financial incentive attached to the scholarship program has proven appealing to students, with nearly two-thirds citing it as the primary reason they registered for the program. The chance to win scholarship money enticed students to enroll in the online modules, exposing them to financial lessons and planning tools they might not have sought out otherwise.
  2. Even a small amount of financial education training increases financial confidence and knowledge significantly. Before completing any learning modules, less than 10% of respondents said they were confident or knowledgeable about finances. After students completed financial education modules, this number increased to more than 40%.
  3. The scholarship program promotes financial wellness while also improving financial knowledge.
  4. Students were asked how likely they were to take action to improve their financial wellness after completing a module. Based on the information they learned, 97% of participants said they were likely or very likely to take action. Following participation in the program, more participants reported engaging in financially healthy behaviors such as having a savings account, building emergency savings, following a budget, or improving their credit score.
  5. Students of color who participated in the program gained more confidence than white students. After finishing the lessons, nearly half of the students of color reported feeling more confident about managing their finances, a 350% increase over students of color who had not yet completed any of the modules. After completing the lessons, students of color reported higher levels of financial confidence than white students.
Based on these findings, US Bank intends to change its scholarship program in 2023 to include more gamified content with shorter, more digestible lessons. Furthermore, a broader range of topics will be available.

To learn how U.S. Bank is improving the scholarship click here.