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FACING GENERATIONAL POST-GRADUATION PLANNING CRISIS, 140,000 WISCONSIN TEENS NOW HAVE ACCESS TO FREE, PROVEN FINANCIAL PLANNING APP

Nonprofit, investment firm and state agency cooperate to bring financial goal-planning tool to high schools throughout state

MILWAUKEE – January 25, 2021 – Faced with the generational challenge of planning for their futures amid a pandemic, Wisconsin high school students now have access to a free financial empowerment app thanks to a new effort by a local nonprofit, investment firm and state agency.

Money Path, the game-changing teen financial education and planning tool from Milwaukee nonprofit SecureFutures, will now be available at no cost to high schools throughout the state of Wisconsin. The roll-out of Money Path to high school educators is taking place in cooperation with the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction and with the financial support of Heartland Advisors.

Money Path is a web-based app that uniquely links academic and career planning with financial planning, allowing high school students to chart a course towards their life goals. In a year when nearly fifty percent of high school seniors changed their post-graduation plans due to the COVID-19 pandemic, preparing teens to make sound career and financial decisions is all the more crucial in building economic health for individuals, families and communities. The app will be made available in multiple formats, including through Xello, the platform used by Wisconsin public high schools for college and career planning.

“We are so excited to have Money Path in our high schools to support our students and educators,” said Sheila Briggs, Wisconsin Assistant State Superintendent, Division for Academic Excellence. “It’s a unique and powerful tool that helps students make decisions about their future academic and career path as well as understand how to plan their financial future.”

The statewide expansion is made possible through support from Bill and Marian Nasgovitz and Heartland Advisors. Heartland, the founding sponsor of Money Path, is an independent investment firm in Milwaukee. In addition to sponsoring the statewide expansion, Heartland also provided the initial funding for the app’s development.

“We view our support of Money Path as an investment in bright young minds throughout the community,” said Bill Nasgovitz, founder and chairman of Heartland Advisors. “The skills and concepts students develop through the program are essential building blocks that can lead to a lifetime of financial security and informed decision making.”

Money Path: details & teen testimonial

The Money Path app guides students through an intuitive, step-by-step simulation of life after graduation, integrating up-to-date data on post-secondary education and job training costs and career starting salaries. It allows students to connect the dots between career path and pay, college expenses and student loan debt, managing a budget, and establishing a timeline for achieving important financial goals like purchasing a car or home and saving for retirement.

Since Money Path was first rolled out in 2018, more than 6,000 young people have benefitted from the app. Ninety-five percent of Money Path users said the app will be useful in helping them build a good plan for their financial future.

Miles, a high school senior in Milwaukee, described Money Path as “a really eye-opening experience.”

“It also got a conversation started with my parents, which makes us more prepared,” Miles said. “In my family we haven’t really talked about finances. It was a very helpful tool overall in deciding how to plan the rest of my future, especially financially.”

“Money Path is a truly life-changing tool, and expanding access throughout Wisconsin will allow more young people to confidently plan their futures and build financially secure lives, families, and communities,” said Brenda Campbell, President and CEO of SecureFutures. “We’re so grateful to Heartland for their support — this is an important investment in the next generation and the long-term financial health of our state.”

Read more of what teens and young adults have to say about the life-changing Money Path app.

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About SecureFutures

SecureFutures has been empowering teens with financial capability since 2006, with programs that have helped 85,000 teens chart a more secure future. Besides Money Path, SecureFutures’ other programs include Money Sense, a classroom-based financial fundamentals program, and Money Coach, a one-of-a-kind financial mentoring program specifically focused on teens from underserved communities. Brenda Campbell, President and CEO of SecureFutures, is a member of the Governor’s Financial Literacy Council in Wisconsin.