March 2022 - Newsletter
Consumer Rights & Protection

Billions of dollars are lost every year from financial scams and identity theft. Being aware of these scams and knowing how to protect yourself and understanding how to keep your information secure will help keep you financially safe.

During March, the week of March 6 - 12, 2022 is National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW). You can take part and check out different tips throughout that week and month by following the hashtag #NCPW2022. You can learn more and prepare for that week by following along at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website.

The State of Michigan has a Department Insurance & Financial Services (DIFS) that regulates Michigan's financial service industry, including insurance, banks, and credit unions. They have put together a resource focused on staying safe online. You can follow them on social media to learn more about upcoming news and releases.
You will find resources that you can use in and out of the classroom to help make this topic come relatable to you and your students.
Scholarships - 2022 Opportunity

The past two years, Michigan Jump$tart Coalition awarded $3,000 in post-secondary education scholarships to six Michigan high school students ($500 each). These student scholarship recipients hailed from across the state - Metro Detroit, Grand Rapids, and Greater Lansing - and were selected from hundreds of applicants. 
We are excited to announce we will have the scholarship opportunity this year and is now OPEN! You can apply to the scholarship here and it is open until April 30th. We will announce the winners in May 2022.

You can learn more from the Scholarship System as a resource that can help you learn more about creating a process in finding, applying and winning scholarship opportunities. You can learn more from the following blog post
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)

The CFPB protects consumers from unfair, deceptive, or abusive practices and act against companies that break the law. They aim to make financial markets work for consumers and the economy.
Educating teachers and students in K-12 on understanding their financial rights as well as safeguarding their identity plays a role. You can search for different types of classroom activities here. We have highlighted a few activities you could use in protecting your identity and knowing your rights as a consumer:

Tax Preparation Options
Getting organized with all your tax paperwork will help save you time. The IRS has created a guide can help you jump into doing your taxes to make things easier along details on new items to consider when filing your returns this year.

The IRS has created free opportunities for those individuals and families that qualify. One of the programs you can learn about in your community is called the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program where you can get free tax help from an IRS-certified volunteer. VITA services are available to people who earn $58,000 or less during tax year 2021. You can find a local provider here.

We know that filing taxes can feel overwhelming because of so many options you have available in terms of free filing options along with those where it costs money. To help you learn more about the different programs by checking out this playlist put together by The College Investor on YouTube. It breaks down each of the tax preparation software in short videos to help learn the pros/cons of each.
Professional Development Opportunities

We are building a calendar of professional development opportunities and other events. Please let us know if you have information to add.


Michigan State University (MSU) Extensions: This program started at the end of February as part of a ten session program called 4-H Financial Fitness and Fun. It's open to students age 12-19 and they can learn about financial goals, saving, budgeting, banking basics, credit, and other lessons through different activities and games. You can sign up for the FREE sessions here. Sessions take place on Thursdays on Zoom from 6:15 - 7:15 PM ET. The sessions and dates:

  • March 3 - Paying for Post-Secondary Education
  • March 10 - Keep Yourself Out Of Debt
  • March 17 - Credit Craze: Managing Credit Wisely
  • March 24 - Grow Your Money: Investing & Risk
  • March 31 - Budgeting: Understanding Income & Expenses
  • April 7 - They Took What? Your First Paycheck & Taxes
  • April 14 - Avoiding Money Mishaps: Tips to Avoid Fraud
  • April 21 - Pay Yourself First: Start a Savings Habit
  • April 28 - Banking Basics

If you have any questions, you can email or by phone at (734) 727-7234.

Below you will find several virtual opportunities throughout the month of March by the following organizations: