The simplest thing we can do to keep spreading financial education is to encourage people to talk about money, and not only adults! Young people need to learn more about budgeting, investing, saving, and retirement too. You can never be too young to start learning about personal finance!
Lately when we’re looking for inspiration, we look to people in their teens and 20’s. Young people today are incredibly well informed, connected, and aware. They remind us that people start creating their own money stories while they’re still kids, and kids can learn that money is a tool everyone should have access to. Encouraging teens to talk to their peers about money will make a huge difference in spreading financial literacy.
Everyone meet Dani! She’s a 15 year old high school student living in Northern California, and she’s part of the team at Teen Financial Freedom. Dani’s focus on personal development as well as money sets a great example for people of all ages, including us! We are incredibly inspired by Dani and the work she’s doing, and we know you‘ll find something encouraging in her money story…
1. What have you learned about money so far? Have you learned useful money lessons from your family?
To be totally transparent here, I am not an expert on money. Before I joined Teen Financial Freedom, I had some knowledge on how credit cards and stocks worked, but I didn’t realize that there were so many more concepts that are critical to being financially independent. All I cared about was “being rich,” but little did I know that being rich is so much more than making money.
I definitely have learned useful money lessons from my family. When my parents brought up conversations about finances, whether it be investing or saving, I would carefully pay attention and ask questions. One of the main lessons I learned from my family is being frugal but still enjoying life!
2. How often do you talk with your family or friends about money?
I talk about money with my family/friends way less often than I’d like to. With my friends, the word “money” is probably never brought up, but with my family I’m able to have some nice conversations with them about finances.
However, I do have a deep passion for personal development and I always try to bring this up during conversations with whoever I’m talking to.
3. What do you know about debt?
Not that much. I do know that debt is not all bad, and can be used for some good. However, I want to expand my knowledge on debt so I can understand it more and use it responsibly in my future!
4. Do you have a checking account? A savings account? Or an investment account?
I have one checking account which I got recently!
5. Do any of the financial independence or FIRE concepts inspire you?
There isn’t just one concept about FIRE that inspires me now, but I definitely do want to be financially independent and free. I’m not exactly sure at what age I want to reach it, but I’m going to continue learning, investing, saving, and hopefully starting new businesses to be financially independent.
6. If you’ve already had your first paying job, what was that like?
A couple of months ago I was presented with the opportunity to help a life coach with marketing and outreach, and that was my first paying job. I have been focusing more on the value I’ve been getting than the money. The skills and advice I’ve learned are worth more than any amount of money in my mind, so I can’t wait to continue learning.
7. What types of future job or career ideas do you have in mind? Are you interested in owning your own business?
As of now, I am not sure what I want to pursue in the future but I do have a couple of different options I’m looking at. I’m interested in psychology, neurology, sports medicine, and business, but I have no idea which path to follow. I do know that I want to end up being an entrepreneur and own my own business. I can see myself first becoming a doctor of some sorts and then starting a business that relates to health/medicine.
8. If you’re planning to attend college, how would your college years be paid for?
I definitely am planning to attend college! I’m more than thankful to say that my college fees would be paid by my parents, but I’m certainly going to apply for scholarships.
9. What kinds of activities do you love? What are the costs of your favorite activities?
I love playing tennis, working out, and journaling. My parents have paid for all the activities I partake in, and I am grateful for all that they spend towards my health, wellbeing, and happiness!
10. Last question – what are you most excited about right now?
Right now, I am most excited about starting to invest in the stock market and seeing where that takes me!
That’s it for now from Dani! We are looking forward to your comments! And we have more interviews from this team of awesome teens on the way so stay tuned.
And please, take a minute to check out the blog and podcast from Teen Financial Freedom! Here’s one of Dani’s TFF blog posts that we enjoyed reading. We are blatantly encouraging our personal finance community to follow this team of amazing young people and support their efforts. They’re all doing great things with their own self improvement and financial education, and spreading financial literacy to other teens. They are actively improving the world!