WATTS, Calif. – A classroom full of students is a rare sight during summer break. These students are dedicated to learn all they can about money.
Local rapper Stix, felt there was a need for a financial class that wasn’t given in school. He learned this all by posting financial tips on social media.
“People were like, ‘Yo, this information is useful. I didn’t learn this in school. I didn’t learn this anywhere. This is helping me,'” says Stix.
Being from Watts, Stix is using his platform to give back to a neighborhood that he says sometimes goes unnoticed.
“My whole goal and my whole focus, whether they remember my name or they don’t, they’ll remember that somebody cared enough to try to give them the tools to survive,” says Stix.
So, he used his connections at the Banc of California to put together this weekly financial literacy program for students in the area. The program is a test run held at the New Charles Drew Middle School.
“It has been going really well because it’s something that is not being delivered in the community. When you bring them something that they need, they will come,” said Stix.
Eleventh grader Jnanya Shingleton decided she would use her summer vacation to learn as much as she could.
“You can relax all you want on summer, but you should still get up and do something. Plus I thought it was a great opportunity to do something and learn how money works,” says Shingleton.
Shingleton says learning about finances will only help her in the future. Other students seem to feel the same. The first class only had 12 participants and now it is up to at least 50.
“I hope this helps me manage my money better, be able to save better, and do better financially in my future,” says Shingleton.
Stix hopes that next summer this program can grow even more and expand to other areas of Los Angeles.
“I want to tap into all the underserved areas in ways that I can to empower people to properly learn how to manage their finances,” says Stix.
School is not out for summer for students eager to learn in Watts.