Almost anyone can agree that saving and investing your money is an important thing to learn as early as you can. Ciara and Russell Wilson decided to not only school almost 900 students from Seattle’s Denny International Middle School on the subject but also leave them with a little gift.
As a way to honor Financial Literacy Month, the Wilsons’ “Why Not You Foundation” partnered up with the NFL Player’s Association and a financial technology company called Goalsetter on April 27, to teach middle school students about the importance of investing and saving. In addition to taking part in the presentation, Russell and Ciara donated $35,000 to give the students a head start in their savings accounts. Each student will start with $40 and will not be able to touch the savings account until they are 18.
Goalsetter CEO Tanya Van Court started with a presentation called “Building Wealth – A Blueprint to Financial Freedom Inspired by Hip Hop,” which detailed how rapper Jay-Z was able to become a billionaire through investing. Then, Russell and Ciara appeared, with Russell starting their segment by informing the students that “Financial literacy and building wealth is so important.” He continued, “Ciara and I really wanted to talk to you all because we didn’t come from much and we had big visions, we had big goals, big dreams.”
The pair went on to quiz the class with some questions about investing. One was about Jeff Bezos and how the 53 million shares he owns in Amazon stock used to be worth $1.50 apiece in 1997, but now one share is worth $3,000 (actually $3467.42 at this writing). After the quiz, Ciara dropped another “jewel” for the class, telling them that while investing in stocks is good, they should also be sure to invest in themselves.
She said, “doing that can pay back tremendously if you invest the right way and do the right things and make sure that you’re putting everything into all that you do.” She added, “Investing is very powerful and it will also allow you to create an opportunity to build legacy for your family.”
Before ending their speech Russell was asked for advice on where they should start investing. The Seattle Seahawks quarterback replied, “I am a big believer in technology.” He later said, “What’s really changing the world is technology. So what I would do is not just invest in your finances but invest your time into learning technology.”
Before leaving the virtual presentation, Russell said, “once again, we can’t wait to see where you all end up and how you guys impact the world.”