Student tellers at Owatonna's in-house credit union
OWATONNA, Minn. -- Money doesn't burn a hole in students' pockets at Owatonna High School. They can park it in their accounts at an in-house credit union.
Teller Seth Stoykovich ticks off the services, "Check deposits, deposits into your band account, withdrawls, money orders."
And something very special Stoykovich didn't mention. He's also a student at Owatonna High School. In fact, every teller at the branch is a student.
"I was approached by the credit union about 5 or 6 years ago," explained Principal Don Johnson. The Minnesota Credit Union Network pitched the idea of putting a credit union at the school as a way to teach students about finance and business.
Because the idea was new to Minnesota, Johnson sent his business teachers to Wisconsin to check out a similar program there.
Teacher Scott Pierce knew students working at the branch would benefit, "And I knew we could use it in marketing. But I was a little skeptical about how much it would get used every day."
HomeTown Credit Union was the only business to step forward when the school decided to move ahead with the plan. HomeTown paid to renovate a room at the school and turn it into a fully operational branch that would fulfull teachers' requirements.
"They really wanted, literally a hands on classroom in the school," said Johnson. "How does business operate? In particular, how do financial businesses operate?"
As it turns out, Scott Pierce didn't have to worry about how whether the branch would be used. Students line up at lunchtime to deposit their money. The DECA Club is working on a marketing campaign. The effort is also teaching students about finances.
"I've learned about multiple savings accounts you can open to save your money," said Senior Abdul Mohamud who is also a teller at the bank.
He and all the other student tellers work at all three HomeTown Credit Union branches. "They get the same training that all of our full time tellers get," said David Dorsett, who oversees the students.
For Owatonna, it's a win-win. Students have a place to park their money, and a place learn about money and business.
"I think it provides opportunities you can't find elsewhere," said Johnson.
(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All rights reserved.)