Students Across the Northwest Save with MESA Program in its First Year

MESA contributes to students’ higher education savings; provides money management courses.

8/10/18MESA Program

Since its launch in 2017, the Matched Education Savings Account (MESA) program has seen success, with 32 students completing 76 financial education courses and saving more than $10,000 for higher education costs —a total of $40,000 with matching funds.

A growing number of Northwest families facing the rising costs of higher education have taken advantage of MESA, which helps low-income students save for post-secondary education in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.

Turn $500 into $2,000
The MESA program helps students avoid debt while strengthening their financial skills. After students meet program requirements, each dollar saved is matched by the Northwest Credit Union Foundation 3:1 for up to $500 in savings and $1,500 in matching funds for a total of $2,000 toward books or tuition.

“MESA’s first-year participation rates show credit unions are a critical resource in helping low-income students cover college expenses. Member credit unions, along with Friends of the Foundation donors, are making a significant impact on these students’ lives,” said Northwest Credit Union Foundation AVP & Managing Director, Sharee Adkins. “It’s exciting to see students being set up for success through savings and financial education, and we’re grateful to everyone who’s helped make MESA possible.”

Making a difference with MESA
By working with local educators and school officials, Clackamas Federal Credit Union has expanded its mission to help improve people’s lives through MESA. Currently, the credit union is helping eight students with college funding assistance and financial education courses.

“At Clackamas, we are dedicated to financial literacy education, and participating in the MESA program has given us another avenue to make an impact with educating our community on the importance of being smart with your money,” said CFCU Marketing Specialist, Hilary Kissell.

In addition to saving at least $25 per month for six months, to participate in the MESA program students must successfully complete coursework and testing on eight core financial topics including money management, credit matters, auto purchasing, and more. Northwest credit unions provide MESA services with matching funds from the Northwest Credit Union Foundation.

The following credit unions offer MESA services:

  • CapEd Credit Union
    • Marketplace Branch – 16275 N. Marketplace Blvd., Nampa, ID
    • South Meridian Branch – 1650 S. Meridian Rd, Meridian, ID
  • Clackamas Federal Credit Union
  • Fibre Federal Credit Union
  • Industrial Credit Union
  • Newrizons Federal Credit Union
  • Puget Sound Refinery Federal Credit Union
  • Sunset Science Park Federal Credit Union
  • TLC, a Division of Fibre Federal Credit Union
  • USAgencies Credit Union

Donors are making a difference in the lives of Northwest students. If you’d like to get involved or learn more about the MESA program and the Northwest Credit Union Foundation, contact Sharee Adkins at sadkins@nwcua.org or at 206-265-0313.