Former footballers in the NFL Players Association recently sponsored a series of personal finance workshops for 30 metropolitan Detroit high school students.
The training, part of the Activate My Greatness four-part youth program, comprised two full Saturdays of formal and informal instruction in finance, including topics like balancing a checkbook and paying bills on time.
Basic skills, for sure, but essential to establishing good credit that allows one to buy a home, purchase a car, or start a business, the students learned.
Former pro football players Benny Blades, Jim Thrower, Alfred Fields, George Jamison, Scott Conover, Ron Rice, and President of the Detroit Chapter NFLPA Tim Walton, shared self-esteem techniques and reasons for learning about business, along with their personal stories of wealth and money management.
“I can’t think of a better use of our time as men, but especially as former professional athletes, than giving back to young people who are eager to learn,” Walton is quoted as saying in a statement.
An Essential Life Skill
As mentioned above, the program’s goals extended to non-financial life skills:
- Strengthen students’ awareness of financial opportunities
- Develop financial confidence in everyday transactions
- Make effective use of services from banks and other financial institutions
- Increase students’ knowledge of their personality traits and of how to exhibit personal leadership
Antonio Stokes of Antonio Stokes Advisors delivered sessions on credit scores, managing a bank account, managing one’s income, savings strategies, check writing, completing a W-4, and understanding deductions on a pay stub.
During the Personal Leadership trainings, CEO and Head Coach of APEX Leadership Academy Edward Foxworth provided instruction in self-understanding. He also described how the students “could synthesize personal success strategies with being good stewards of their money,” according to a statement.
The program was further supported by sponsors Comerica Bank, Doug Walls and the Eagle Excavation Team, the Detroit Lions, the NFLPA, Henry Ford Health Systems, and proceeds from a Former Players Detroit Chapter–sponsored fundraiser held this past summer.
Activate My Greatness includes training in college prep, leadership, and career planning, Foxworth told me. The four-part program is part of Apex Leadership Academy, a nonprofit.
“I am grateful to have had these professionals come and participate in this meaningful series,” he said in a statement. “As we plan for additional training in college preparation, leadership education, and career planning in the coming months, sponsors are needed to support delivering the same level of quality to more Metro Detroit youth.”
For more information and to make a tax-deductible donation, visit www.APEXLeadershipacademy.com.