Cincinnati — The Fifth Third Foundation today announced the funding of a three-year grant worth $750,000 for $martPath, an elementary school financial literacy program administered by the University of Cincinnati (UC) Economics Center. As a leader in the delivery of financial empowerment programs at every age and stage of life, Fifth Third invested in $martPath to complement its own L.I.F.E. (Lives Improved through Financial Empowerment®) programs.
The grant will enable the rollout of $martPath's digital platform in Ohio, Michigan and Florida. Designed by the UC Economics Center for elementary grades one through six, $martPath integrates economics, personal finance, mathematics, English and language arts into time-strapped classrooms to aid teachers in accomplishing multiple instructional goals.
"We are very grateful for the support from Fifth Third and are honored to partner with them to bring this wonderful resource to classrooms," said Dr. Julie Heath, director, UC Economics Center. "$martPath is transforming how we teach economic and financial education, and Fifth Third's support speaks to their role as corporate citizens and their commitment to our community's well-being."
"Fifth Third is deeply committed to improving financial literacy across America, and especially in the markets we serve," said Heidi B. Jark, senior vice president and director of The Foundation Office at Fifth Third Bank. "We are dedicated to making that happen in a variety of ways—from funding solid programs already in existence like $martPath, to collaborating with partner companies to deliver financial education to high schools, to developing our own signature programs like the Fifth Third Bank Young Bankers Club®and Fifth Third Bank Empower U®. We are eager to see the fruits of $martPath's expansion into our markets."
$martPath covers the following topics: goal setting, budgeting, saving and spending decisions, human capital investment, business operations, methods of payments and more. $martPath utilizes animated stories at each grade level, along with traditional classroom activities and online interactive exercises. The platform includes homework that extends the in-class experience and reaches parents. The curriculum has earned two national awards.
A teacher in Columbus, Ohio, who utilized $martPath in her classroom in the 2016-2017 school year, said, "This program was a game changer for my students. The environment in which my students live is one that does not always embrace the importance of informed decision making. My students enjoyed every lesson."
Through this grant, Fifth Third and the UC Economics Center expect to reach approximately 22,500 students per state over the next three years, for a total of 67,500 students. Fifth Third Bank representatives will participate in teacher training sessions as well as outreach to their students.
Fifth Third Bank's investment in financial empowerment programs is part of the Bank's $30 billion commitment to the community. The five-year commitment runs through 2020 and has specific targets for investments, lending and Fifth Third Impact initiatives spanning philanthropy, inclusion and diversity, housing and small business-related investments, financial empowerment and more. Additional information is available at www.53.com/commitment.
About Fifth Third:
Fifth Third Bancorp is a diversified financial services company headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Company has $142 billion in assets and operates 1,295 full-service Banking Centers, including 99 Bank Mart® locations, most open seven days a week, inside select grocery stores and 2,650 ATMs in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Florida, Tennessee, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Georgia and North Carolina. Fifth Third operates four main businesses: Commercial Banking, Branch Banking, Consumer Lending, and Investment Advisors. Fifth Third is among the largest money managers in the Midwest and, as of September 30, 2015, had $297 billion in assets under care, of which it managed $25 billion for individuals, corporations and not-for-profit organizations. Investor information and press releases can be viewed at www.53.com. Fifth Third’s common stock is traded on the NASDAQ® Global Select Market under the symbol "FITB." Fifth Third Bank was established in 1858. Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender.