University of Wyoming Extension News

More than 450 eighth graders expected for money conference

Helping youths get smart about money is the theme of the first conference of its kind in Wyoming, “Jump$tart Your Money,” Tuesday, Sept. 30, in Cheyenne.

“This is a special event for eighth graders in southeast Wyoming to come learn about personal finance,” said University of Wyoming Cooperative Extension Service (UW CES) personal financial management specialist Cole Ehmke.

Ehmke said more than 450 eighth graders are registered for either the morning or afternoon sessions at Laramie County Community College.

Ehmke represents UW CES on the board of Wyoming Jump$tart Coalition (, the primary organizer of the event.

“In the Jump$tart Coalition’s biennial personal finance survey of high school seniors, they could correctly answer only 51.2 percent of the questions,” Ehmke said. “Because our students are struggling with financial literacy basics, this event is an opportunity to raise the importance of money management. It also gives the students some take-aways they can use now.”

The featured speaker is Susan Beacham, founder and chief executive officer of Money Smart Generation in Lake Bluff, Ill.

On her Web site (, Beacham said her goal is to teach money management basics to elementary students before bad habits set in. She calls this segment of the education system “virtually untouched because of the perceived complexity of the subject matter.”

Wyoming Secretary of State Max Maxfield will provide opening comments.

Sponsors of the event include the Daniels Fund, First Interstate BancSystem Foundation and the Credit Union Foundation of Colorado and Wyoming.

For more information, contact Ehmke at (307) 766-3782 or, or the Wyoming Jump$tart Coalition’s president, Diana Stoick in Casper, at (307) 265-9250 or


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