Delaware State, with funding from Schwab, to launch financial literacy center

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Delaware State University announced the launch of a new Financial Literacy Institute (FLi) with support from Schwab Advisor Services in partnership with the Charles Schwab Foundation.

The company has pledged a four-year grant to facilitate the creation of the new program, as well as the expansion of the Financial Planning curriculum and the renovation of the Financial Network Trading Room operated by the University’s College of Business.

The amount of the grant was not announced.

“This partnership is exciting because the need to improve the financial planning and wealth management skills of our students is essential to our core mission of changing their life trajectories,” said university President Tony Allen. “It is potentially devastating to realize that families of color amass wealth at a rate seven times below that of white families, and that in the wake of  Covid this gap is increasing. Our education of these young people has to include top-flight training in how to acquire, manage, and grow their wealth, whether they’re becoming teachers, scientists, or joining an independent advisory firm.”

“Anytime we can join with academia to bring more awareness to the Registered Investment Advisor profession and do our part in helping to create interest among students, we are all in,” said Bernie Clark, head of Schwab Advisor Services. “It is incredibly important that we build a pipeline of diverse and high-quality professionals for independent advisory firms to hire in the future, and we are thrilled with the efforts underway at Delaware State University that we believe will make that a reality.”

The partnership will support the College of Business in expanding its Financial Management programming for Business majors.  The tools and resources provided by the new Financial Literacy Institute (FLi) will allow students to learn more about wealth management, build relationships with industry leaders, explore careers in the Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) profession, and help foster community outreach. 

DSU is converting its minor in Financial Planning into a full-fledged Financial Planning and Wealth Management degree concentration, “but we’ve not been able to offer the program at full potential yet,” said Dr. Nandita Das, professor of finance, who will play a key leadership role in the institute’s organization and development.  “The infusion of Schwab’s expertise and support allows us to complete that project to the benefit of our students.”

“The support and education does not stop at graduation,” added Dr. Das. “We will be providing our alumni access to workshops and counseling focused on wealth management. What the Schwab support gives us is the resources to impact our students and alumni over the course of their lives, to become a consistent, sustaining resource. This is the magic of the multiple touchpoint approach.”

Delaware State University will collaborate to establish an advisory board of nonprofit, regulatory, and private sector organizations, as well as school districts and other higher-education institutes, to guide and promote the effort.

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