Financial wellness education is very important to Kitsap Credit Union, and since 2016, we’ve been providing free money education to students around Puget Sound. We recently caught up with our Outreach Coordinator, Cathy Brorson, to get the scoop on our Achieve Financial Wellness Programs she coordinates in the schools we serve.

What is the Achieve Financial Wellness (AFW) program?

The Kitsap Credit Union Achieve Financial Wellness Program is an online certification program specifically designed for high school students. It certifies students in the basic concepts of good financial money management. Students who complete the program receive a tangible certification they can put with their job applications and resume.

What schools do we currently offer the program and in which grades?

We first launched this program in 2016 in just 5 schools. I am proud to say that we are now making this program available to 20 high schools for students in grades 9 – 12. Schools include:

  • Bainbridge Island High School
  • Kingston High School
  • North Kitsap High School
  • Central Kitsap High School
  • Klahowya Secondary School
  • Olympic High School
  • Barker Creek Community School
  • Bremerton High School
  • Renaissance High School
  • North Mason High School
  • South Kitsap High School
  • Lincoln High School
  • Tacoma School of the Arts
  • Governor John Rogers High School
  • Eatonville High School
  • Washington High School
  • Graham-Kapowsin High School
  • Spanaway Lake High School
  • Emerald Ridge High School
  • Bethel High School

What types of topics do students learn?

Students learn about banking basics, taxes, benefits, budgeting, consumer skills, managing credit and debt, financing higher education, and even insurance basics. All the topics help them build a foundation necessary to find independence and financial wellness as they get older.

What kind of feedback do the students provide once they complete the certification?

This is the most rewarding part for the credit union and me. Check out some of these comments students have provided.

“This class has really helped me feel relieved for my future as I now know how to do real-world, post-high school responsibilities such as taxes, banking, using cards, and buying a house. This class should be required for every Senior.” – Jordi M., Student, Graham Kapowsin High School.

“I enjoyed the game-style walkthrough of the program. It made learning more fun and easier to understand. I know a lot more about insurance, especially now, and better ways to save my money in the future.” – Eira F., Student, Emerald Ridge High School.

“I liked learning about cars and car insurance because I used this unit. I bought my own car from what I’ve saved and got my own insurance and license.” – Easton M., Student, Emerald Ridge High School.

“My ‘aha’ moment was in learning about student loans and taxes since they’re something so crucial after high school. Learning about loans and the process behind them, filling out and filing taxes, plus learning about gross and net pay all made me feel better about my post-high school life.” – Rileigh S., Student, Bremerton High School.

“I learned more about saving and investing my money. My family doesn’t talk about money, and they make some poor money choices. So, I’m thankful to go through this course and learn how to use my money wisely.” – Rebekka G., Student, North Kitsap High School.

Do you offer any other financial wellness resources?

Yes! We offer free financial wellness on our website that includes learning modules for many of the same topics discussed above for adults. We also provide fun, engaging resources, and videos for young people (adults love them too!). You don’t have to be a member to access these resources, just click the “Resources” tab on our website and then “Financial Wellness.”

How can a school/teacher learn more if they are interested in the program for their students?

If a school is interested in participating in the program and #KCUCares, don’t hesitate to contact Cathy Brorson directly via email at