That headline might seem a little broad, but just look at that homepage!
Let’s not get ahead of ourselves: meet Young America, a nonprofit whose mission is, “educating and inspiring the nation’s youth to succeed despite today’s dim job prospects and government gridlock. Our goal is to help today’s youth understand why they can’t find a job, why their parents may be underemployed and how the entire nation can return to economic growth that benefits all Americans.”
Their first project? GenFKD. While the name sounds like a top-secret government mission, you can actually learn all about it on their website, such as the fact that their name stands for “Generational Financial Knowledge and Development.” Translation: improving millennials’ financial literacy on subjects like personal finance and the job market.
They describe themselves as, “a nonprofit that doesn’t engage in politics. Instead, we’re here to talk policy. Economic policy. The stuff that effects us every day, whether we understand it now or not. So let’s understand it.”
Already sounds more entertaining than your Econ class, doesn’t it? That’s their aim: educating millennials about economic and financial literacy in a concise, entertaining way, which makes perfect sense – if you want to get millennials’ attention, your message absolutely must be both concise and entertaining so it doesn’t get lost in the whirlwind of information that we’re exposed to each day.
“There’s really no easy outlet for students to find financial tips or job hunting advice,” says GenFKD Managing Editor Chris Sonzogni told Washington Weekly.
“Oftentimes even school career centers are a little bit too intimidating for students to approach. So we just try to make [our materials] as funny humorous or engaging as possible, so people want to come back and check out what we have to offer.”
“The barrier to entry of picking up financial knowledge is that it’s very hard to break through,” added GenFKD’s Co-Founder and Executive Director, Jesse Jacobs, “so we like to provide information in easy, digestible little snippets.”
On their website you can also find GenFKD Salary and Cost of Living Calculator, which calculates what your salary will look like after taxes, and how that breaks down to paying for basic living expenses, student loans, car payments, etc.
They’ve also cultivated a news aggregate, which brings you concise, recent financial articles that have been handpicked by the GenFKD staff – so you stay informed without sifting through multiple sources.
“This is really beneficial because unlike picking up the Wall Street Journal or the New York Times, if there’s something you don’t understand, then you have to go look it up – or you don’t, and you just lose interest! For [our news aggregate], you can just hover over the tough words, and we define them for you,” said Jacobs.
Their organization launched in August of last year. Since then, they launched their on-campus brand ambassador program on 10 campuses in Virginia and Florida. This semester will introduce brand ambassadors on 15 additional campuses in 4 more U.S. states.
“Our outreach and marketing strategy is pretty multifaceted,” said Sonzogni.
“In addition to building a ‘grassroots’ base, we maintain a pretty heavy social media presence (Twitter and Facebook being our main channels). Our outreach is also sometimes more traditional in that we do ‘regular’ PR: media outreaches, press releases, strategic partnerships, etc.”
They do all this to help YOU find a good job, not be broke, and have a chance to win at life! Sounds good to me.
Here’s to financial literacy and making a difference,