A group of UWF students outside the university's College of Business. (University of West Florida/Special to The Pulse)

UWF receives $1.5 million gift to establish financial literacy center

The University of West Florida has received a $1.5 million gift from Consumer Credit Counseling Service of West Florida, Inc. to establish the Center for Financial Literacy at the UWF College of Business.

“We are grateful for the opportunities this gift will provide not only to our campus community, but also the citizens of Northwest Florida,” said UWF President Martha D. Saunders. “The donation aligns with the College of Business’s mission to contribute to the advancement and economic development of the region. The Center for Financial Literacy will equip individuals with the skills and knowledge needed to make informed and practical financial decisions.”

The Center for Financial Literacy will provide counseling services and educational seminars to students and the public with the goal of enhancing the financial literacy of the citizens of Northwest Florida.

“The UWF College of Business looks forward to perpetuating and expanding the work of the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of West Florida,” said Dr. Tim O’Keefe, dean of the College of Business. “Through this generous gift, we are committed to counseling and educating our community in financial, credit and debt management that will enable financially responsible decisions.”

The gift will allow UWF to establish a $1 million endowment that will generate $40,000 annually to underwrite programs and services in support of the Center for Financial Literacy’s mission. The additional $500,000 will support programming benefitting community organizations with specific projects to improve financial literacy.

An advisory board comprised of local professionals with financial expertise will provide guidance to the Center for Financial Literacy. Educational content offered by the Center for Financial Literacy will cover topics including financial skills and knowledge, prudent use of consumer credit, debt management, credit counseling, money management, business ethics, mortgage counseling, retirement planning and income taxes.