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The 5th Annual Teen Financial Boot Camp just wrapped up at the Winters Library. Over an entire Saturday, local students from ages 16-20 were introduced to a variety of essential financial skills to better manage their money and be prepared for “the real world.”

The day started with the foundations of how to achieve financial success. Beginning with how to set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-Bound) financial goals, students were assigned a career with a mock salary and practiced budgeting for real-world expenses like rent, groceries, and most importantly, saving to achieve their goals. A 2013 survey showed that almost 50% of Millennials have never written a check, but many will receive one with their first paycheck. Teens identified the elements of a check and practiced writing a check and balancing a checkbook. Students took an in-depth look at how credit unions, as local non-profit financial institutions, can offer better service with a focus on their communities.

After a complimentary lunch, students spent time with Maria Zamorano, our Winters Branch Manager, learning all about credit, including how to figure out the best deal and apply for a loan, and took a deep dive on what goes on in a credit report. Wrapping up the day, boot camp attendees learned about how to be on the look-out for identity theft and all the ways they could easily become a victim and how to try and avoid it. We capped off the boot camp with a $100 raffle.

A huge thank-you to the Winters Unified School District for use of the Parsons Room at the Winters Library and Winters High School for help promoting this opportunity. It’s because of strong local partnerships like these that Yolo Federal can offer workshops like the Financial Boot Camp to Yolo County.