Pittsburgh, PA (October 17, 2006) - Going on offense to advance financial literacy, today, Visa USA, PNC Bank, a member of the PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE: PNC), the NFL and PLAYERS INC have teamed up with NFL star Heath Miller of the Pittsburgh Steelers to engage Pittsburgh students in a different kind of football game - one that prepares them to become fiscally fit adults. Called "Financial Football," this animated, money management computer game is the centerpiece of a 17-city Visa/NFL initiative to promote youth financial literacy around the country.
"Learning the fundamentals of money management at an early age gives young people a real advantage in meeting their own financial goals," said Heath Miller to a room full of students and teachers at Schenley High School in Pittsburgh. "Managing money and finances is a vital life skill, and one that that is best taught, and learned, before high school graduation."
Huddled in the Schenley High School Library, Miller coached the "home team" comprised of half the students, while Melody Graves and Dave Panneton, regional managers for PNC Bank in Pittsburgh, headed up the "visiting team." Together, the two engaged students in "Financial Football." The content, developed with the cooperation of the NFL and its players, incorporates lessons taught through Practical Money Skills for Life, Visa's free, award-winning money management program.
"Financial Football" combines the structure and rules of the NFL with financial education questions of varying difficulty. To score points, a team needs to answer questions correctly. And, just like in the NFL, penalties can cost a team yardage. The team with the highest point total after four quarters wins the game.
Today's event is the seventh stop of this educational campaign. Last year was the inaugural season for this national effort between Visa, the NFL and PLAYERS INC to get students engaged and excited about their financial futures. In addition to being a game, this year "Financial Football" is also a one week, five part financial literacy program designed for high school instruction.
"Equipping our nation's youth with a roadmap to financial freedom and success really needs to be a cooperative effort between schools, the community and government," said Sophia Facaros, principal, Schenley High School. "By working together, we are preparing them to make wise financial decisions for a lifetime."
"PNC Bank and Visa are committed to providing a variety of financial education programs that are designed to help people in the communities we serve develop sound money management skills for today and the future," said Andrew Russell, executive vice president and retail banking manager of PNC Bank's Western Pennsylvania region. "Visa's Financial Football game and PNC's ongoing efforts in our communities and schools to teach children of all ages how to budget, save and spend wisely will help them manage their finances in the future."
"Financial Football" is part of Practical Money Skills for Life (www.PracticalMoneySkills.com), a comprehensive financial literacy program - available in English, Spanish and Chinese - that teaches young adults personal finance skills.
"Visa is proud of its long standing commitment to financial education and greatly appreciates the assistance we received today from Heath Miller," said Jason Alderman, director, Visa USA. "We take great pride in our NFL sponsorship, which is enabling us to work with so many talented players to give students the tools, resources and encouragement they need to become more financially literate."
This free, educational resource provides teachers with lesson plans (kindergarten-college) mapped to their state education requirements. For students, there are interactive games and calculators designed to teach responsibility and important concepts such as earning, saving and budgeting money.
About Visa USA
Visa USA is the nation's leading payment brand and largest payment system, enabling banks to provide their consumers and business customers with a wide variety of payment alternatives tailored to meet their evolving needs. Visa USA is committed to increasing the choice, convenience, acceptance and security of Visa payments for all stakeholders in the payment system — members, cardholders and merchants. Through its 13,369 member financial institutions, more than 500 million Visa-branded cards have been issued to cardholders in the United States.
Worldwide, cardholders in more than 150 countries carry more than 1 billion Visa-branded cards, accounting for more than $3 trillion in annual transaction volume.
Worldwide, cardholders in more than 150 countries carry more than 1 billion Visa-branded cards, accounting for more than $3 trillion in annual transaction volume. VisaNet, Visa's global processing system and the world's largest financial network, processes transactions with unparalleled reliability.
Visa offers a trusted, reliable and convenient way to access and mobilize financial resources — anytime, anywhere, anyway.
About PNC Bank
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (www.pnc.com) is one of the nation's largest diversified financial services organizations providing retail and business banking; specialized services for corporations and government entities, including corporate banking, real estate finance and asset-based lending; wealth management; asset management and global fund services.