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LifeSmarts announces partnership with Toyota Financial Services to focus on personal finance education in October

LifeSmarts announces partnership with Toyota Financial Services to focus on personal finance education in October

Teen consumer literacy competitive scholarship opportunity program has introduced “First-Generation College Students’ Guide to Success”

For immediate release: October 4, 2021
Media contact: National Consumers League – Carol McKay, carolm@nclnet.org, (412) 945-3242

Washington, DC–The 28th season of LifeSmarts, a national scholarship competition and educational program coordinated by the National Consumers League (NCL), kicked off earlier this fall at LifeSmarts.org, where students learn about real-life consumer issues and compete to win prizes and scholarships. Today, in honor of the program’s focus on personal finance curriculum during the month of October, NCL announced new resources for competitors, made available by special underwriting by Toyota Financial Services.

This month at LifeSmarts, educators and student participants will focus on personal finance topics ranging from budgeting to investing. New curriculum offered for the first time this year includes content covering purchasing a car, evaluating post-secondary educational options, and financing a post-secondary education.

Thanks to a partnership with Toyota Financial Services, LifeSmarts’ focus on personal finance topics will span the entire program year. Students and educators will have access to new lessons and learning materials, answer new competition questions about post-secondary education and vehicle ownership, and see a concentration on personal finance topics at the upcoming National LifeSmarts Championship to be held in April 2022.

“We are so excited to work with Toyota Financial Services to devote the month of October to personal finance issues,” said national Program Director Lisa Hertzberg. “We know LifeSmarts gives students the skills they need to succeed as adults, and we see students applying what they learn immediately at home and in their communities. We are thrilled to be able to give special focus to the most crucial lessons in personal finance, and we look forward to rolling out new resources for teachers and opportunities for student participants.”

Besides personal finance, LifeSmarts focuses on four other main content areas: health & safety, consumer rights & responsibilities, technology & workforce preparation, and the environment. Students are quizzed on their knowledge of these subject areas during online competition. Top-performing teams then advance to statewide competitions, and state champion teams advance to the national championship held each year in a different American city. The 2022 National LifeSmarts Championship will take place April 21-24 in Washington, DC. Winning teams receive scholarships and other prizes.

Last year, students answered more than 3.5 million consumer questions about credit reports, recycling, nutrition, social media, state lemon laws, and everything in between. More than 100,000 students are expected to participate in the program in the 2021-2022 season. In the last year, the LifeSmarts program has pivoted to offer additional resources for both at-home and in-the-classroom instruction, as educational institutions across the country have had to evolve in response to the pandemic.

LifeSmarts is active in all states and the District of Columbia, where NCL is headquartered.

“We are excited to have the opportunity to focus on personal finance for consumers at this age, when they are beginning to make decisions for themselves and influencing decisions made by their parents,” said Sally Greenberg, executive director of NCL. “Too often, traditional high school curriculum fails to teach students vital information to become successful adults, and LifeSmarts helps to close that gap.”

“Toyota Financial Services considers personal financial education to be an important aspect of readying young people for adulthood,” said Vipin Gupta, Group Vice President & Chief Information Officer. “LifeSmarts’ unique approach creates a highly engaging educational process, and Toyota is pleased to partner with them to impart these vital life skills to students.”

As part of its ongoing support for LifeSmarts, Toyota Financial Services is again opening its Making Life Easier scholarship application process to LifeSmarts students and alumni this fall, with an application deadline of November 1.

In addition to hosting the official LifeSmarts competition, LifeSmarts.org provides resources for teachers to supplement existing lesson plans. These include daily quizzes, educational videos, social media competitions, focused study guides, and scholarship opportunities. LifeSmarts lessons closely align with courses taught in family and consumer sciences, business, technology, health, and vocational education.


Visit LifeSmarts.org for more information.

LifeSmarts: Learn it. Live it.


About LifeSmarts

LifeSmarts is a program of the National Consumers League. State coordinators run the programs on a volunteer basis. For more information, visit: LifeSmarts.org, email lifesmarts@nclnet.org, or call the National Consumers League’s communications department at 202-835-3323.

The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.


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