Business

Students run on-campus credit unions

High school students in Federal Way who aspire to careers in the financial industry can get a helping hand from Woodstone Credit Union.

For six years, Woodstone has teamed with local schools to operate on-campus credit union branches. Students can obtain teller certification and learn other job and financial skills.

Once trained, the students, supervised by Woodstone employees, operate fully functional credit union branches within their schools, said Diane Childs, marketing director for Woodstone.

The work-to-school program, which opened at Decatur High School in 1995 and at Federal Way High in 1997, also teaches students marketing campaigns and strategies to promote their school branches –– Eagle Credit Union at Federal Way and Gator Savings at Decatur.

At the school branches, students can get cash for school events or lunches without leaving school. Students and teachers can deposit checks and cash (minimum deposits of $25) and check their account balances.

Susan Streifel, Woodstone president, touted the “hands-on” experience that makes “the transition from school to work that much easier. The real-life work experiences place them one step ahead of their peers who are not involved in such a unique program.”

Of 150 credit unions in the Puget Sound region, Woodstone is one of only two with school-branch programs.

Gator Savings celebrated its grand opening for the current school year Dec. 10.

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