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A young HOPE member puts money away for college!

More than 130 Jackson-area children will start or continue saving for their college education with a visit to Hope Credit Union (HOPE) this week as part of the Mississippi College Savings Account (MS CSA) Program.  The two-year pilot project will help more than 500 families prepare to fund college tuition costs with healthy savings habits. 

During the week of October 29 students at Virden, Jones, and Westside Early Childhood Development Centers in Jackson will visit the Medical Mall and Terry Road branches.  For the October 31 field trip, children are being encouraged to wear their Halloween costumes when they make their deposit.  Some children will be making return visits to the credit union to add to their existing savings account while others will be opening an account for the first time.

The program establishes an account at HOPE for each participating child enrolled at the participating centers.  To give program participants a boost, MS CSA is matching any deposit up to $50 during the visits in addition to any funds contributed by the family.  Accounts will be built with deposits from the child, family members, friends, and community organizations as well as interest and any program contributions that may be made over time.

An enthusiastic HOPE saver with a very active
piggy bank!
The MS CSA program seeks to address the gap in higher educational attainment affecting low- income and minority students in Mississippi, where less than 15% of 9th graders end up transitioning to and completing college.  The program will help children create a financial nest egg, increase economic opportunity, and transform their aspirations for their own futures, including planning to attend college.

Proceeds from the savings accounts can be only be accessed upon admission of the account holder to a postsecondary education program at an accredited institution, including a university, college, community college, trade school, or vocational training program.  Money may be used to pay for educational expenses that include tuition, room and board, or other fees required by the educational institution.