MADISON, Wis. (8/20/14)--There may be a university logo on their debit cards, but collegiate credit unions also are integral to financial literacy efforts at their namesake institutions.
This week, the board of trustees for Seminole State College of Florida in Sanford approved a partnership with CFE FCU, Lake Mary, that will support financial education and scholarships.
The $1.4 billion-asset credit union will develop an on-campus financial literacy program, contribute to programs at the college's Career Development Center and host money management workshops. The sponsorship will provide up to $250,000 in annual support for Seminole State College over the next 10 years.
In 2015, CFE FCU will launch a special branded debit card with the college's logo. For each debit card purchase, the credit union will make a donation to the Foundation for Seminole State College. The foundation will use the proceeds of the donations to provide scholarships and support other programs.
Student members also benefit from belonging to their university credit union. Many offer free checking, access to surcharge-free ATM networks, shared branching and on-campus ATMs or branches. Universities with high populations of international students focus on free incoming wire or interbank transfers to help students get money from home.
Debit rewards programs are popular as well. Purdue FCU, West Lafayette, Ind., with $823 million in assets, offers a free student checking account that includes cash back for debit card usage. In a reward of a different kind, Harvard University Employees CU, Cambridge, Mass., with $452 million in assets, treats good students with good eats. Students who show their GPA of 3.5 or above will receive a $10 restaurant gift certificate from the credit union.
St. John's University, Collegeville, Minn., will have a student-run branch on its campus this fall, thanks to a grant from the Minnesota Credit Union Foundation. The branch of $11 million-asset Collegeville Community CU will be one of the first credit unions on a university campus in Minnesota.
The branch will be managed by a 2014 St. John's graduate and employ up to six students part time. The credit union also hopes to work with the school departments to offer real-life experiences, ranging from accounting to finance and marketing.