The Maryland Council on Economic Education (MCEE) opened its doors in 1953 and our mission is to assure that Maryland’s school children leave high school equipped with the economic knowledge and decision-making skills they will need to make informed, rational decisions as consumers, workers, citizens, savers, investors and participants in the global economy. We work with students and teachers in every school system in the state from kindergarten through 12th grade to improve their financial literacy and give them the skills they need to achieve financial security in their futures. Young adults face a greater likelihood of always being a paycheck behind, not getting a job because of a poor credit score, or facing a bankruptcy situation. The effect of financial literacy in low to moderate communities is even more impactful—these are the students struggling to break the cycle of poverty.
“Financial literacy has the greatest positive impact on those with the least education, decreasing the likelihood of financial fragility by nearly 7 percentage points for those in the lowest education category.”
Empowering Maryland Students with Financial Literacy
What we need to know to make sound economic and financial decisions far exceeds the knowledge that most of us have. Economic and financial illiteracy are widespread problems but they are problems that can be solved through education. In Maryland, the Maryland Council on Economic Education is spearheading the effort to eradicate both economic and financial illiteracy. Our primary strategy is to work through the education systems to increase reach and improve the quality of economic and financial instruction that is provided in Maryland’s schools. MCEE believes in the importance of teacher professional development—we provide content knowledge and resources to classroom educators that enable them to effectively provide economic and personal finance education to their students.
In addition to empowering the teachers, we also have many fun and effective student programs that they can participate in to help them learn the economic and financial standards for their grade level. For example, MCEE is the only licensed state administrator of the Stock Market Game (SMG) and national studies have shown that students who play the SMG score higher on national math standardized tests across the board versus students who have not had the opportunity to play. Students who play can improve their own quality of life by learning financial life skills, how to plan for future financial security through saving and investing, how to think globally and understand how the economy affects them.
A Longstanding Partnership with Towson University
The Maryland Council of Economic Education is honored and delighted to continue our longstanding partnership with the College of Business and Economics at Towson University. Together we are promoting the importance of financial literacy and economics in all Maryland schools! Support from BTU—Partnerships at Work for Greater Baltimore has allowed us to offer a hands on field trip experience to fourth through twelfth grade students participating in the Stock Market Game. We bring teachers and their students to the T. Rowe Price Finance Lab in Stephens Hall where they attend a session of ‘Saving and Investing’ at the lab. During their visit they are able to:
- Trade on Bloomberg Terminals
- Check their portfolios
- Learn tips on ‘How to become a Millionaire’
- Take a tour of Towson University
- Enjoy lunch in the dining hall for a true college experience
This is a wonderful opportunity for the teachers and students and a great way for us to showcase Towson University to students who may never have had the opportunity or occasion to visit before. Many have left with the hope of becoming a future Towson Tiger!
Our partnership with TU has helped us impact the lives of many more Maryland students. We have tripled the number of visitors this year and filled every opening in the finance lab that was available to us. This school year we will have over 1,200 students and teachers visit Towson University and the T. Rowe Price Finance Lab from 27 different schools.
MCEE looks forward to continuing our partnership and we hope our joint efforts will impact even more students next year.