Heartland Bank and Trust Company was recently honored with the Innovation in Financial Education Award presented by NASDAQ and EverFi. The award recognizes its significant efforts to improve the financial capability of young Americans. Twenty-five financial institutions were honored with this distinction at a ceremony hosted at NASDAQ’s Marketsite headquarters in New York City.
Honorees were selected based on a set of criteria that included the scale and reach of their financial education initiatives, the duration of their commitment, and unique employee volunteering activities that supplement their programs.
“NASDAQ is committed to fostering innovation and economic growth, and the institutions we’re recognizing here today have led exceptional efforts to rethink how financial education is taught in our nation’s schools,” said NASDAQ Executive Vice President Nelson Griggs. “Our global competitiveness is dependent on the next generation understanding how the economy works and how to achieve financial security in their lives. We are grateful to the organizations that are helping pave a brighter future for students today.”
As young adults are faced with increasingly complex financial decisions, Heartland Bank is committed to providing students with the skills and knowledge needed in order to succeed. Heartland Bank has partnered with EverFi to bring the financial education program to local students at no cost to schools or taxpayers and has reached over 4,628 students since 2012. The web-based program uses the latest in new media technology – simulations, gaming and adaptive-pathing – to bring complex financial concepts to life for today’s digital generation.
The Heartland Bank Money Matters Program provides the foundation for a better life for kids and their families, as they learn to avoid financial choices that they may encounter in the future. “We are committed to serving local residents by using our resources and our voices to advocate on their behalf. These outreach efforts reflect our community bank heritage and demonstrate our community-wide allegiance,” said Heartland Bank Chief Executive Officer, Fred Drake.
A FINRA-funded study released in February 2015 found that students who received rigorous financial education in high school saw increased credit scores and decreased chance of credit delinquency as young adults, compared to their peers who did not receive financial education. Data collected from nearly 1,839 students who completed the Heartland Bank Money Matters in the 2013-2014 academic year revealed that students’ understanding of credit scores increased by an average 30% after interacting with the curriculum.
Administered by teachers in a classroom setting, the web-based course offers over six hours of programming on a variety of financial topics including credit scores, insurance, credit cards, student loans, mortgages, taxes, stocks, savings, 401k’s and other critical concepts that map to national financial literacy standards. The platform uniquely tracks the progress and performance of every student.
About Heartland BankHeartland Bank and Trust Company is an independently owned community bank with assets of $2.5 billion. Headquartered in Bloomington, IL, the bank has offices in communities throughout Illinois. The bank offers a complete line of financial services to commercial and retail customers. More information is available on the bank’s website at www.hbtbank.com.
EverFi, Inc. is the leading education technology company focused on teaching, assessing, and certifying K-12 and college students in the critical skills they need for life. The company teams with major corporations and foundations to provide the programs at no cost to K-12 schools. Some of America’s leading CEOs and venture capital firms are EverFi investors including Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, Twitter founder Evan Williams, and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt. Learn more at everfi.com.