Texas A&M Central Academic Building.
Texas A&M-San Antonio's Central Academic Building. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

At Texas A&M University-San Antonio’s 10th birthday celebration Monday morning, university officials announced a big birthday present: $1 million from the Financial Literacy of South Texas Foundation to increase financial literacy for students and community members.

“Financial literacy is power, and these kids, these students, … this is going to enrich their lives,” foundation board member Paul Denham said. “They are going to have families that know exactly what finances are, how to set them up, and how to run their families. They are going to spread that through this community, and this city is going to be better because of it.”

The donation will support two different areas: scholarships for students majoring in accounting and finance, and stipends for students who are working on financial literacy projects through the university’s Mays Center for Experiential Learning and Community Engagement.

Students will receive special consideration for scholarships if they can demonstrate an active role in promoting financial literacy within the community.

University President Cynthia Teniente-Matson said the donation aligns with the school’s mission to “create learning opportunities that foster social development and scholarship and public service while advancing our commitment to high-impact learning experiences directly aligned to financial literacy, one of the challenges of the day.”

Teniente-Matson told the Rivard Report that the university would like to include a student financial literacy center within a future student union. The main focus of such a center would be to teach students about potential earnings, student debt, and credit, she said.

The Financial Literacy of South Texas Foundation was established in 2015 to promote financial literacy in education. It was founded with assets from the nonprofit Consumer Credit Counseling Services of San Antonio.

Emily Donaldson reports on education for the San Antonio Report.