FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 2, 2008
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Steve Burke, for Visa Inc.
Minnesota Vikings Legend Cris Carter Faces-off in Fiscal Scrimmage at Republican National Convention
Visa and NFL Money Management Video Game, Already Distributed Nationally to Every Public High School in Sixteen States
Minneapolis, MN. - September 2, 2008 - Former NFL star and Minnesota Vikings All-Pro Cris Carter joined the Young Republican National Federation, the College Republican National Committee, the National Football League (NFL), PLAYERS INC. and Visa Inc. in an effort to help young adults sharpen their fiscal skills through an interactive money management video game called "Financial Football."
Entering its fourth season, "Financial Football" is the centerpiece of Visa's nationwide education initiative, with the NFL and PLAYERS INC., designed to help students tackle their financial futures. This computer-based game is accompanied by a classroom curriculum and can also be downloaded for free on cell phones. Mobile customers can play the game by texting the word VISA to 24421.
In the Minneapolis Convention Center, Cris Carter rolled up his sleeves and engaged members in a lively game of "Financial Football." In addition to playing "Financial Football," Carter also shared his personal experiences on the importance of money management with students.
"Young people need to know how to make smart money management decisions before heading off to college and entering the workforce," said Carter. "It takes the combined efforts of parents, teachers and mentors within the community to give teenagers a strong background in personal finance."
Last week, Visa held a similar "Financial Football" event at the Democratic National Convention with young Democrats and former Denver Broncos Wide Receiver and two-time Super Bowl Champion, Rod Smith.
"For over a decade, Visa's financial education initiatives have helped millions of people worldwide learn about managing money wisely. We brought 'Financial Football' to Minneapolis to not only help educate young adults who played the game, but also to continue shining a spotlight on the importance of financial literacy with the thousands of policymakers attending the Republican National Convention," said Denise Dunckel, Senior Director, Global Corporate Relations for Visa Inc. "Our hope is that the next President places a strong emphasis on helping America's children learn about the critical life skill of money management."
Demonstrating broad-based support for having financial education begin at home and extend to the classroom, a study released last year by Visa showed that 91% of consumers surveyed believe all high school students should take a financial education class before graduating.
"Financial Football" puts students' fiscal knowledge to the test in an online simulation environment by combining the structure and rules of the NFL with financial education questions of varying difficulty. Teams score points by answering various money management questions correctly. Wrong answers and penalties can cost a team yardage. The team with the highest point total after four quarters wins the game.
The computer-based "Financial Football" game is accompanied by a classroom curriculum, which has been distributed for free to every public high school in sixteen states. Since 2006, Visa has partnered with state government officials to distribute the game to each public high school in: Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
The game's online version has been downloaded more than 200,000 times at www.practicalmoneyskills.com/football. In 2007, "Financial Football" also became a free, first-of-its-kind cell phone game.
"Financial Football" is part of Practical Money Skills for Life (www.practicalmoneyskills.com), a free, award-winning, teacher-tested and teacher-approved financial education program that is available in English, Spanish and Chinese. The program contains three comprehensive sections, complete with money management resources and lesson plans tailored for use at home, in the classroom or at work. It also contains an array of tips to help prepare for life changing financial events, from planning for a baby to saving for college and retirement, as well as a number of other budget calculators and interactive games. Visa also runs What's My Score (www.whatsmyscore.org), a leading higher education consumer awareness program. The Web site guides college students through the ABC's of a FICO credit score, from factors that can lower a score to ways on improving it, at no charge.
About Visa USA
Visa Inc. operates the world's largest retail electronic payments network providing processing services and payment product platforms. This includes consumer credit, debit, prepaid and commercial payments, which are offered under the Visa, Visa Electron, Interlink and PLUS brands. Visa enjoys acceptance around the world, and Visa/PLUS is one of the world's largest global ATM networks, offering cash access in local currency in more than 170 countries. For more information, visit www.visa.com.
For more information or to schedule an interview with a Visa spokesperson, please contact Steve Burke at 703-946-5737.
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