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Family Economics News National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA - December/January 2010

The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) works with land-grant university partners and others to advance knowledge for agriculture, the environment, human health and well-being, and communities through national program leadership and federal assistance. Among the agency’s goals is to support increased economic opportunities and quality of life in rural areas. Family economics aligns with this goal by focusing on how individuals and families obtain and use resources such as money, time, human capital, material resources, and community services; by exploring the relationship between individuals and families and the larger economy; and by studying the impact of public issues, policies, and programs on family economic well-being.

Back issues of Family Economics News are available. To submit items for consideration for this newsletter, contact Jim Terry, NIFA program analyst.

Research/Program Evaluation

  • Improving Financial Literacy Research

  • College Students’ Financial Behaviors

  • Food Insecurity Up in Recessionary Times

Education/Extension

  • Experiencing eXtension

  • Financial Security eXtension Team Wins National Awards

  • Money Matter$: Promote America Saves

  • Social Networking Topic of Pre-conference

  • Earned Income Tax Credit and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance

Resources

  • FDIC: Message to Consumers and Educational Outreach
  • Rural America at a Glance
  • Budgetball
  • Sandwich Generation
  • The 5 Tips Series
  • Farm Business and Household Survey Data

Opportunities

  • Call for Papers:

    • Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal

    • Journal of Consumer Affairs 

    • Journal of Personal Finance

    • Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning

    • The Journal of Youth Development

    • Journal of Family and Economic Issues

    • W.K. Kellogg Foundation/Family Income and Assets

    • Journal of Family and Economic Issues: Special Issue

  • Funding:

    • Grants.gov

    • FINRA Investor Education Foundation

    • National Endowment for Financial Education

    • MMI Financial Education Foundation1

Calendar

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Improving Financial Literacy Research

The Networks Financial Institute (NFI) at Indiana State University held the “Improving Financial Literacy and Reshaping Financial Behavior” conference May 14–15, 2009. The conference attracted research leaders representing academia, government, and the financial services community and included participants from Africa, Australia, Europe, and North America. Over 2 days, participants heard from three keynote speakers in the areas of financial literacy education, financial literacy policy, and the relatively new area of behavioral finance. Research highlights from the conference focused on retirement planning, youth financial literacy, and the results of the National Research Symposium on Financial Literacy and Education. Some conference papers will be published in a summer 2010 special issue of the Journal of Consumer Affairs.

College Students’ Financial Behaviors 

In recent years, a great deal of attention has been placed on the financial behaviors of emerging adults (18-24) who often begin their college careers without ever having been solely responsible for their own personal finances.  There is general consensus from several previous studies that students lack basic financial knowledge. Thus, states have discussed the need for financial education and have taken different measures, ranging from doing nothing to requiring classes and testing. The purpose of this study is to examine whether state policies regarding financial education are associated with differences in financial behaviors of college students when controlling for financial socialization, knowledge, and disposition of college students. It is hypothesized that more rigorous state financial education policies should lead to an improved likelihood of positive financial behaviors. Through structural equation modeling, this study shows that financial education is an important predictor of financial knowledge. Financial socialization is an important predictor of financial dispositions. Further, both knowledge and dispositions are important predictors of financial behavior. In addition, having any policy at all represents an important tipping point toward better financial knowledge, healthier financial dispositions, and more prudent financial behaviors.

This study was funded by a grant from the National Endowment for Financial Education. Contact Michael Gutter for more information on this study or visit the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences web site.

 

Food Insecurity Up in Recessionary Times

The recent economic downturn has brought a sharp increase in the number of Americans who report having difficulty meeting their food needs. In 2008, the number and percentage of U.S. households classified as “food insecure” reached the highest level recorded since federal monitoring of food insecurity began in 1995. USDA’s food and nutrition assistance programs provide additional resources in times of rising food insecurity. In FY 2008, combined expenditures for all USDA food and nutrition assistance programs totaled $60.6 billion, an increase of 10 percent over expenditures in 2007. To learn more, see the December issue of Amber Waves.

 

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Experiencing eXtension

This online Moodle course acquaints educators with personal finance information and features of eXtension. To help you maximize your use of eXtension and make your day-to-day work easier, individual modules of the course can be completed independently and can be reviewed periodically; it is not necessary to complete the entire course. While the main focus of the course is on eXtension features that can be used on a wide variety of topics, information relating to Managing in Tough Times (MiTT) and the MiTTNet Directory are included. Information on program implementation, including development, marketing, funding, and evaluation, is provided in the last topic area of the course.

To use Experiencing eXtension, visit eXtension’s Professional Development Course Web site register and log in. The course is listed under the Communication and Education category. Once you are enrolled you can go directly to the course. For more information contact Nancy Porter at Clemson University.

 

Financial Security eXtension Team WinsNational Awards

The eXtension Financial Security for All Community of Practice (COP) received on December 3 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) Chairman’s Award for Innovation in Financial Education. FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair cited past COP Chair Debra Pankow, North Dakota State University; current Chair Patricia Swanson, Iowa State University; and Jane Schuchardt, National Institute of Food and Agriculture advisor, for leading the development of the financial security segment of eXtension.org. eXtension was one of six organizations or individuals selected for the award, which culminates FDIC’s 75th anniversary observance.

The Financial Security for All team also received an eXtension Outstanding COP Award at the recent 2009 National eXtension Conference in St. Louis. As a pioneer eXtension COP, the team was cited for inspiring targeted audiences, through its information, resources, and features, to learn and implement important financial strategies. For more information, visit the eXtension Personal Finance Web site.

Money Matter$: Promote America Saves

In today’s world, teens increasingly are using social networking sites such as YouTube to get information. Staff at Okaloosa County, University of Florida Extension, has created “Money Matter$,” an online video series that focuses on financial topics.  This project also promotes the Okaloosa Saves initiative as well as the 4-H Youth program. During America Saves Week 2010, February 21-28, 2010, videos can be used to supplement presentations, stimulate discussion, or be referenced in news releases. Go to YouTube, the Okaloosa 4-H channel, or visit the Okaloosa Extension Web site for more information. 

Social Networking Topic of Pre-conference

The 2009 American Association for Financial Counseling, Planning, and Education (AFCPE) Extension Pre-Conference was held in conjunction with the AFCPE Annual Conference, November 18–20 in Scottsdale, AZ. The pre-conference theme focused on Using Social Networking in Financial Education. The objectives were for extension educators to gain a basic understanding of social networking tools, view examples of social networking in progress by extension, learn how to apply selected tools to evidenced-based financial education, and obtain a national extension update on the financial security program. Visit the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s Financial Security Web site to view pre-conference resources.

Earned Income Tax Credit and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance

Are you looking for a program with measureable impacts that can really make a difference for low- and moderate-income families? Would you like to report that your extension programming helped dozens of families in your area save hundreds of dollars on tax preparation costs and receive thousands of dollars in tax refunds—dollars that can help strengthen local economies? If so, consider making taxpayer education a part of your extension programming. Learn more about this collaborative effort between the Internal Revenue Service and NIFA.


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FDIC: Educational Outreach and Message to Consumers

As a direct result of legislative and regulatory changes in 2008 and 2009, FDIC has updated all of its deposit insurance coverage materials. The FDIC also wants consumers to be aware of the FDIC in its role in protecting their savings and the deposit insurance coverage resources that are available. Also, the FDIC wants to educate consumers about the deposit insurance coverage available at FDIC-insured banks. Visit the NIFA Web site for links to other informative articles.

Rural America at a Glance

The Rural America at a Glance series highlights the most recent indicators of social and economic conditions in rural areas for use in developing policies and programs. Reports in this series use current social and economic data to highlight population, labor market, income, and poverty trends. The reports provide information on key rural conditions and trends for use by public and private decisionmakers and others in efforts to enhance the economic opportunities and quality of life for rural people and their communities.

Budgetball

The National Academy of Public Administration (National Academy) and the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO) have launched a project to help young adults take charge of their own financial future and participate in the public debate about how best to secure national, state, and community fiscal sustainability.  Using a new “fiscal” game, “Budgetball ,” as a means to engage students, 10 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) will be selected to participate in the Budgetball Civic Engagement Initiative during the 2009-2010 school year. The National Academy and NAFEO are now taking applications from HBCUs.  Each participating school will designate a student leader as its “Budgetball Scholar” to coordinate campus-wide Budgetball events and build a sustainable effort for ongoing civic engagement on issues related to fiscal responsibility and social equity. 

Sandwich Generation

The terms “Sandwich Generation” or “SandGEN” refers to adults who are responsible for their own needs as well as the care and support of both their dependent children and elderly family members. Investing is an important part of one’s financial security. As a member of SandGEN, you can also be affected by the financial security of your children and your parents. Members of this generation face difficult financial considerations when balancing their own economic needs with the needs of their families. At the Sandwich Generation Resource Center you can find information on common investment scams, red flags of investing, and download a copy of The Sandwich Generation: Caught in the Middle.

The 5 Tips Series

The Federal Reserve Board has a 5 Tips Series” to help consumers with issues such as bank accounts and services, consumer credit, identity theft, mortgages, and personal finance. Some of the latest resources of the 5 Tips Series include 5 Tips for Avoiding Foreclosure Scams, 5 Tips for Dealing with a Home Equity Line Freeze, 5 Tips for Improving Your Credit Score, and many more. These resources are also available in Spanish.


Farm Business and Household Survey Data

This interactive data-delivery tool includes estimates of 2008 finances, structure, and characteristics of U.S. farm businesses and farm households.

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CALL FOR PAPERS/PRESENTATIONS:

Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal (open submissions)
Journal of Consumer Affairs (Open submissions)
Journal of Personal Finance (Open submissions)
Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning (Open submissions)
The Journal of Youth Development (Open submissions)

Journal of Family and Economic Issues (Open submissions)
W.K. Kellogg Foundation/Family Income and Assets (Open submissions)
Journal of Family and Economic Issues Special Issue. Deadline is March 1, 2010.

2) FUNDING:

Grants.gov is your source to find and apply for federal government grants. There are more than 1,000 grant programs offered by all federal grant-making agencies.
FINRA Investor Education Foundation. The deadline to apply for September 2010 funding is March 4, 2010.

National Endowment for Financial Education. The deadline for NEFE’s October 2010 grant cycle is June 1, 2010. To learn more about the NEFE grants program, visit the NEFE Web site and click on the Grantmaking section.

MMI Education Foundation

The foundation uses its resources to serve the public interest and strengthen the communities where we live and work. The foundation provides periodic announcements and grant guidelines.

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2010

America Saves Week 2010, February 21-28.
  
EFERMA (Eastern Family Economics & Resource Management Association) Conference March 3-5, Chattanooga, TN. Contact Michael Rupured for more information.

The Priester National Extension Health Conference will be April 20-22, 2010 in Mobile, AL. 
2010 ACCI Conference, April 15-16.

CYFAR 2010 Conference, May 4-7, San Francisco, CA. Details pending.

AFCPE,  November 17-19, Denver, CO.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD). To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call (800) 795-3272 (voice) or (202) 720-6382 (TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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  • NIFA Contact: Vacant

  • eXtension (pronounced ee-eXtension) Financial Security for All provides reliable, research-based, and up-to-date financial and consumer information, including learning lessons, fact sheets, and unbiased peer-reviewed answers to frequently asked questions. Consumers can access eXtension 24/7/365 on any Internet-ready device.
    Contact: Debra Pankow, family economics specialist, North Dakota State University, or go to eXtension.org and click on Personal Finance.

  • National Initiative "Financial Security in Later Life" Contact: Nancy M. Porter, Family Resource Management Specialist, Clemson University

  • Financial Literacy for Youth Contact: Erica Tobe, Program Leader for Youth Financial Literacy, Michigan State University Extension


Back issues of Family Economics News
are available.

To submit items for consideration for this newsletter, contact Jim Terry, Program Analyst, NIFA-USDA.


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).  To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call (800) 795-3272 (voice) or (202) 720-6382 (TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Mention or display of a trademark, proprietary product, or firm in text or figures does not constitute an endorsement by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and does not imply approval to the exclusion of other suitable products or firms.