Thursday, 29 April 2010

Financial education begins at home

Students are looking different lately. They’re not only getting younger (or is it me?) but at this time of year their usual youthful carefree smiles have been replaced by grimaces of worry. Stress. Terror even. They’re twisting their iPod wires like worry beads and chewing their nails more than gum it seems.

Yes. The end of term exams are approaching and the pressure’s on. You can almost smell their fear (or at least I hope that’s what it is).

Added to the academic pressure lots of them are going to leave Uni clutching not just a degree certificate but a whopping IOU as well.

US research carried out last year showed that the students who’ll manage their debt the best aren’t the brightest ones. Or the ones who had good financial education. They’re the ones whose parents have tip-top financial habits.

The authors of the study conclude: "Parents who intentionally teach their children about financial management may exert a greater influence on children's financial knowledge than do lessons learned in high school and those learned in the workplace combined. Given the importance of financial well-being to many indicators of college student success, such parental investment in the financial skills and knowledge of their adolescents may pay substantial dividends in terms of youth health, adjustment, and academic success."

Some education, it seems, really does begin at home.

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