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Personal Economics Program

The Personal Economics Program (PEP), sponsored by Leadership GBA, is an effort by bankers to encourage financial education in the most practical sense. The objective is to educate Georgians (children, teenagers and adults) on banking services and personal finance.

Begun in 1977 as a means of assisting volunteer bankers with classroom presentations, PEP is the primary outreach program of the American Bankers Association Education Foundation. Today, PEP reaches out to all age groups, from kindergarten and first grade to college and adult.

PEP is an expression of the philosophy that no one benefits from financial ignorance on the part of the individual or the public, least of all the commercial bank. It is just good business - in the long run - for consumers to understand how to balance a checkbook, use credit wisely and budget their money. It's also important for consumers and future consumers to understand banks as a business and the services they offer.

Through PEP, bankers make themselves available to educators, civic groups and other organizations to help teach about ...

  • what a bank is and how a bank serves the community

  • the products and services of a bank

  • how to become financially literate and

  • how a bank helps people with their financial challenges

Why is PEP Needed?
The banking industry is not well understood by the American public, and the majority of U.S. high school and college graduates cannot handle the basic financial activities of everyday life - a fact that may relate to their lack of understanding about banking operations. PEP focuses on activities like balancing a checkbook, managing a family budget and using credit wisely.

PEP is an investment in the well-being of Georgia communities, as well as a means to improve public knowledge about the banking industry.

What are the Benefits of PEP?

  • PEP informs students and others about banks and the services they provide, thereby educating future consumers.

  • PEP promotes financial education, thereby enabling the consumer to make more informed decisions about personal financial goals.

  • PEP financially empowers consumers, and a more financially educated consumer is less likely to file bankruptcy.

  • Through interaction with bankers in the classroom and on bank tours, students increase their awareness of possible banking careers.

How is PEP Organized?
The Leadership GBA of the Georgia Bankers Association is responsible for the delivery of PEP throughout the state. A PEP committee is appointed each year to oversee the program. 

What Materials are Available?
Through the American Bankers Association and other sources, several videos and brochures are available for use in the program. Topics include:

  • checking account management

  • touring the bank (a cartoon for kids)

  • a guide to bank services

  • careers in banking

In addition, the Georgia Bankers Association and the PEP coordinators serve as a clearinghouse for other information around the state and country that would assist bankers in educating their communities. (Please send an e-mail to the Webmaster if you know of materials - videos, slides, brochures, etc. - that might be used in this way.)

These videos and brochures are helpful but are not essential.  PEP is a human resource and not a physical resource, and a banker's knowledge of the industry alone qualifies the banker for participation in PEP.

PEP Statistics
Over the life of the program, PEP has reached almost 16.5 million people around the country through 455,000 presentations.

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