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Mary Embry
Apparel Merchandising and Interior Design

Last modified: Thursday, March 11, 2010

IU SIFE students to present free banking workshops for elementary school children

March 11, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The Indiana University chapter of Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) will present free Smart Cookie Banking financial literacy workshops for elementary school children at the public libraries in Bloomington and Ellettsville.

SIFE Project

Members of IU's Students in Free Enterprise group will conduct two free public workshops about how to be smart consumers. The workshop is funded by a grant from the HSBC Global Education Programme.

The workshops will emphasize importance of saving over consumption, and will take place at the Monroe County Public Library Wednesday, March 31, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. and the Ellettsville Library Thursday, April 1, from 6:30 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. Smart Cookie Banking workshops are recommended for children between the ages of 8 and 11.

"Thanks to the continued support of our local libraries, this has been a quality project for both IU SIFE students and the kids that attend," said Mary Embry, the SIFE faculty advisor at IU Bloomington. "Students plan how to make the concept of saving money relevant for young kids and the kids have fun making independent decisions about spending money."

This is the third year the project is being funded through IU's SIFE group. The workshops are funded by a $750 grant from The HSBC Global Education Programme, and SIFE competed against 390 applicants to win the grant.

HSBC began a relationship with SIFE in 2005, offering university students around the world the opportunity to educate others about financial literacy.

To sign up to attend these events, call 812-349-3100 (Monroe County Public Library) or 812-876-1272 (Ellettsville Library), or sign up online:

About Smart Cooking Banking

Over the past two years, Smart Cookie Banking has conducted eight workshops, traveling as far as Bangkok. Results from previous workshops indicated that after being exposed to financial concepts such as interest, the children changed their spending behaviors and saved more. The receipt of the grant has allowed for improvements in materials used for the workshop, including funding "SIFE store" inventory and creating a take-home shopping tally that will compare their spending vs. saving choices.

About Students in Free Enterprise

The Indiana University Bloomington chapter of Students in Free Enterprise is an award-winning student group that advocates service-based learning to create a more sustainable world through the positive power of business. The organization annually supports an average of seven projects that are measured for impact and presented at regional and national competitions. The Department of Apparel Merchandising and Interior Design (AMID) in the College of Arts and Sciences supports SIFE financially and with faculty advisors who facilitate student projects. Faculty guidance is provided by Professor Mary Embry, a Sam Walton Fellow and faculty member in AMID's Retail Studies Program. SIFE can be contacted through or