Can you imagine a millennial graduate, with two bachelors of science in Physics and Calculus and a Masters in Mathematic Chaos, unable to secure a mortgage because his student loans are over $125,000 and he is earning a blue collar salary? How could a Suma Cum Laude graduate not understand the consequences of accumulated debt when he can calculate the rate of expansion of the universe? Something’s got to give.
Parents need to organize a movement in their school districts at the elementary level to compel school boards to include financial education as part of their mandated core curriculum. How can you graduate from school with a four-point average in math and science and remain incapable of understanding the economic value of a purchase item and whether or not it’s a good deal? It just seems incomprehensible that young adults are granted significant lines of credit without the financial discipline that comes with financial stewardship. How can we create a generation of money smart and savvy kids who are able to make good financial decisions? Parents have to own this issue because it’s an issue of family prosperity into perpetuity that’s at stake.
Most parents bemoan that fact that they were not taught basic fundamentals of financial stewardship. Well, it’s never too late to learn; but if your financial education is just beginning at your retirement date the learning curve will be steep. Most baby boomer parents may not have had a formal financial education, but many of them had good role models and living examples from their Great Depression Era parents. They may have to travel back to the mores of the past and practice them in the present to secure a prosperous future for their progeny.
Remember, if your financial adviser or insurance agent is unwilling to help you through your money problems then it’s time to find one who will.