Standing Bear students learn financial notes at school concert

Lincoln Standing Bear students picked up noteworthy knowledge about their financial futures Sept. 22 during a music-themed school event.
Members of the rock band Gooding gave students chord-filled insights about credit scores, savings accounts and debt payments. Leaders of the new Nebraska Business at Standing Bear Focus Program worked with the Nebraska Council on Economic Education (NCEE) and the Funding the Future organization for the show.
Standing Bear freshmen Rogan and Hailey felt the concert taught them important issues in a fun setting. The concert’s main goal was to promote financial literacy for everyone at school.
“I learned a lot of things from the financial literacy concert,” Rogan said. “I learned the benefits of an IRA (individual retirement account) and how you can use money with them. This is due to compound interest. I also learned how your credit score works and how it’s used and operated.”
“To begin with, I learned about what would happen if I put away only $50 a week into a Roth IRA account, which you can make money off of your own money with compound interest,” Hailey said. “Then, by the time you are ready to retire you will have close to $650,000 in that account to use in your retirement.

Jacob Shaffer, chairperson of Standing Bear’s business department, said he was impressed with how Gooding spoke to students about the subject. He believed that made the concert successful.
“Financial habits, just like other habits, are formed at a young age,” Shaffer said. “Those habits will persist regardless of how much money someone makes, so it’s important for students to build a rock-solid foundation to lean on as they keep gaining financial responsibilities and whether they have $10 or $10,000.” 
Lindsay Tillinghast leads the Nebraska Business at Standing Bear Focus Program. She felt the concert came at a perfect time, as a personal finance course is now mandatory for all high school students in Nebraska. She said the new requirement highlights the importance of financial literacy at Lincoln Public Schools.
“It is extremely important for students to develop financial literacy skills in high school as they are beginning to earn money and continue to make purchases,” Tillinghast said. “Financial literacy is all about understanding the tradeoffs between decisions made today and the impact on the future, a concept we refer to as opportunity cost.”

Standing Bear leaders reached out to Funding the Future in July to see if it would be possible to have a band come to Lincoln. Tillinghast and Jennifer Davidson, president of the NCEE and associate professor of practice in economics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, also helped set up the event.
Students took part in a short lesson about financial literacy before the 9 a.m. concert. They then filled bleachers in the gym to watch the band deliver four guitar-based songs.
“Finance is related to everything a person does, and since there’s so much to learn about finance, starting to learn in high school is much better than starting to learn in a career or college,” Shaffer said. 

Lead singer and guitarist Steven Gooding encouraged everyone in the crowd to fine-tune their financial skills. He said learning good financial practices now would help them reap major benefits in the future.
“You have the best thing in the world. You have time, especially being freshmen and sophomores,” Gooding said. “If you start saving at your age, there is no limit to what you can accomplish.”

Rogan said Standing Bear students took good financial notes for their futures at the concert.
“It’s important to learn financial topics in high school for many reasons,” Rogan said. “For example, let’s say that you didn’t learn it in high school, so instead you get into tons of unneeded debt that you can’t pay back, and that then destroys your credit score, making it even harder to buy things.
“You would be able to avoid all of that if you had learned how to be financially responsible with your available funds at a young age.”

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Published: October 3, 2023, Updated: October 6, 2023

Members of the rock band Gooding play their guitars for Lincoln Standing Bear students on Sept. 22. Band members performed a concert and spoke to students about financial literacy during the morning.