ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (WJHL) – Students now have the opportunity to gain more financial experience as the Northeast Community Credit Union (NCCU) creates a credit union at Elizabethton High School.
The NCCU has developed a curriculum to teach students about a variety of financial situations – from opening a bank account to taking out credit to customer service.
“We have developed a 16-week program that we can apply to each of the two schools where we have student branches that allows us to use up to eight student groups per school year,” said Teresa Arnold, President and CEO of NCCU.
This opening follows after another student credit union at Unaka High School has proven successful and helpful. The program at the EHS will start in spring 2022.
Students will work on the booth once the curriculum is introduced.
“We plan to have a few students each semester who actually work hand in hand with a credit union,” said Dusty Duncan, director of EHS community partnerships. “They will obviously not have physical accounts of our students and staff, but they will be able to work together to achieve customer service skills.”
For now, the credit union is making its employees available to both students and employees.
“We had a lot of students asking questions about it,” said Duncan. “We’ve probably already had three or four students opening accounts.”
Duncan said that they were promoting the branch primarily to teachers and staff as an option available to them as they prepare for the student curriculum roll out.
Students are interviewed based on the teachers’ recommendations to participate in the program. We are primarily looking for students who are emerging juniors and juniors in the spring to take part in the program.
According to Duncan, EHS already offers financial management courses and hopes to provide students with hands-on experience as well as access to internships to apply that knowledge.
Students are ready and eager to tackle some big goals.
EHS junior Emma Pendergrass said she was saving up for a new car. Although she doesn’t have a bank account yet, she hopes to have one soon.
“I really think this would be a great opportunity to go into this course and just know everything there is to know about a loan because a lot of people think you can just go in and get one, but it’s not the; You must have good credit, ”said Pendergrass.
Fellow Junior Jayci Bowers thinks well of her future when it comes to the program. Although Bowers said she already has a bank account, she is excited about the opportunity to learn about finances.
“I just want to be able to spend well and use my money wisely,” Bowers said. “So that I can later have the money for later purposes such as children or just a car and I don’t get stuck in life.”