Financial Literacy, for Free — New Tool Launched by NJ
Would you benefit greatly from a professional taking a look at your resume? Do you want to easily track your spending to see how much money you waste on a weekly basis? Need a refresher, or maybe an initial lesson, on mortgages or student loan repayment?
All of that and more are now available free of charge from the state of New Jersey. The New Jersey Department of the Treasury on Wednesday launched a free financial wellness platform that's available to all Garden State adults.
"Our goal in launching NJ FinLit is to provide New Jerseyans with tools to help them better prepare for and meet future financial challenges," said Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio. "It is our hope that this free educational resource, which can be personalized by New Jerseyans at all stages of life, regardless of income, and translated into multiple languages, will both help our residents strengthen their financial resiliency and enable them to reach their long term goals."
Among other perks, the program crafted specifically for New Jersey features financial education courses; retirement and home affordability analyzers (are you on track to accomplish either?); a suite of student loan and higher education tools; and personal finance calculators.
Upon enrollment, users may be greeted with the opportunity to have their resume reviewed by a workforce expert.
Users of the platform will be asked to update their "stress score" regularly, so New Jersey can gauge the correlation between stress levels and improved financial wellness.
"We're really looking forward to seeing in this first year what resonates most with participants, and where they feel we can beef things up," Muoio said.
Gov. Phil Murphy announced the launch during a CNBC event, as part of National Financial Literacy Month.
"Understanding money, building credit, saving for a home or retirement — these are life-long lessons that persist well after we leave the classroom," Gov. Murphy said.
A law signed by Murphy in 2019 requires schools to incorporate financial literacy instruction in grades 6 through 8. The topic must also represent at least 2.5 credits of a high-schooler's education.
The new platform was developed by San Diego-based financial education company iGrad, which currently works with hundreds of colleges and universities, more than 20,000 employers, and more than 300 financial institutions.