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Financial Trust to open two branches at West Seneca high schools

May 29, 2016 | 716 Jobs

For over 40 years, Financial Trust Federal Credit Union has been committed to being connected with the community and the West Seneca Central School District. Originally known as the West Seneca Teachers Credit Union, Financial Trust is passionate about giving back and educating their customers and local students in financial literacy.

They are involved with K-12 education by providing instruction and bridging the financial literacy knowledge students are learning about in class to the business world. They provide scholarships and internships to academy students, support the schools’ sports teams and Students of Excellence program, provide sponsorships for both East and West Senior High School graduation programs and take on many more supportive roles.

Most recently, the credit union is excited to announce they will be opening up branches in the lobbies of both West and East Senior High Schools to give Academy of Business and Finance students real-world, hands-on learning opportunities while serving their members.

“Financial Trust is submerged in the West Seneca culture and gives back by always striving to serve others which benefits our students, parents, teachers, administrators, school board members as well as other business professionals,” said Colleen Christmann, academy director and staff development facilitator. “It makes me very happy that our students are gaining the knowledge and experience to be successful and productive citizens. Many thanks to CEO John Morrison and Financial Trust Federal Credit Union for their dedication and support!”

Financial Trust has always been willing to provide students with internships at one of the eight local branches. With the two new in-school branches, he hopes to further educate students in the district.

“These kids will touch every area,” Morrison said. “They’re not in a room filing files, they’re put to work. They’re a customer service rep for a financial institution.”

Morrison has been wanting to open a branch in the two high schools since before he was the CEO of the nonprofit credit union. There is currently a student-run branch located in Orchard Park High School, and it has been well-received by students, faculty, staff and parents.

“Financial Trust will do fine whether or not there are branches in any school, but it’s about giving back and helping kids,” he said. “It’s all part of the culture and philosophy that we believe in. We’ll be educating students but also providing a service to the community. We’re breaking down the walls of the school to bring the real world inside. It’s very unique.”

In order to be a teller in the branches at West and East, students must be members of the Academy of Business and Finance. Security parameters will be in place so the student tellers will not be able to see what is in the customer accounts, providing an extra comfort to teachers and staff.

Besides teaching students valuable skills – communications, customer service, problem solving, money handling, working with others – the new branches will be a convenience to anyone in the schools who has or would like to open an account with Financial Trust.

“They will be able to do banking right here while they’re at work,” Christmann said. “And the students can put on their resume that they were a teller.”

“It’s a win-win. We know we are going to help kids and in the process make it a little easier on teachers and staff,” Morrison added. “It’s a no-brainer to me.”

The school branches will be open during lunch periods, with a grand opening planned for the fall. To open an account, an interested customer simply has to stop in at any of the branches and make a deposit. To learn more about the credit union, visit the West Seneca branch at 4257 Seneca St.

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