For this month’s BECU Expert Q&A, we sat down with Stacey Black, Lead Financial Educator, to learn more about how she works within our local communities to educate and promote financial wellness—something that she has aspired to do since she was in college.
What kind of work do you do with financial education?
As the Lead Financial Educator, I spend a lot of my time in high school classrooms teaching all kinds of financial topics from budgeting to investing. I also teach adult webinars and seminars on everything from how to read your credit report to home buying. Another fun part of my job is doing TV and print interviews regarding financial wellness. Check out Stacey’s interview with Seattle’s King 5 News.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?
The best part of my job is when I get feedback that one of our presentations has made a positive impact on someone’s life. I have had people reach out after a session telling me what a difference the information has made for them financially. I love it when I hear from someone who took a home buying seminar and they tell me they are now proud homeowners. Or, the person who improved their credit enough to be able to finally get out from under their high-interest loans.
Why did you want to go into Financial Education?
As long as I can remember I’ve wanted to be a teacher. Many of my family members are teachers and I went to school to be an elementary school teacher. While I was in college I got a job as a teller at BECU and saw what an impact financial education can have, so I set my sights on becoming a financial educator. I wouldn’t change that decision for the world! I get to do what I love and meet new people every day.
What is the best piece of financial advice that you have ever received or given?
We hear it all the time but it is so important to pay yourself first! Make saving a priority. Set up automatic deposits from your paycheck to your savings account. That way it’s out of sight and out of mind. I’ve never met anyone who said they wish they didn’t save so much, but I’ve met plenty of people who say they wish they would have saved more.
Check out the full list of all BECU Financial Education programs here.