Citizens Bank Foundation provides $100,000 grant to National Constitution Center for Building Strong Citizenship program
2,000 Philadelphia students take part in finance-themed program
PHILADELPHIA (May 11, 2011) The Citizens Bank Foundation announced today a $100,000 grant to the National Constitution Center as part of a new Building Strong Citizenship program designed to teach Philadelphia School District students about American financial history and constitutional financial concepts.
The grant funded the creation of two finance-themed program days with free admission for 2,000 students from the city’s Promise Academies and Title I schools which serve Philadelphia’s most at-risk children and underperforming students. The first free admission day will take place on Wednesday, May 11 and the second on Saturday, June 4.
The $100,000 grant also has allowed the Center to update its Activity Guide to include a new featured activity on finance. The guide is distributed free of charge for year-round visits by teachers and students. A minimum of 160,000 copies will be distributed.
“The National Constitution Center is a terrific resource and by expanding its curriculum to provide additional focus on Alexander Hamilton and constitutional financial concepts, we hope this finance-themed programming will create an enlightening and continuous learning experience for our next generation of leaders,” said Daniel K. Fitzpatrick, Citizens Bank President and CEO for Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. “Financial literacy is critically important because it is a building block for long-term economic success. We are excited by the opportunity to partner with the Center on such an important project.”
The Building Strong Citizenship program incorporates exhibits and resources from the Center and also includes Citizens Bank volunteers who will deliver age-appropriate financial literacy training to students ranging from third grade to high school using the FDIC’s Money Smart educational modules. An overarching theme for the day is to promote an understanding of the interrelationship between economic stability, citizenship and healthy communities. This program is the latest initiative stemming from the long-running collaboration between the Center and Citizens Bank. Ellen Alemany, Chairman and CEO of the bank’s parent company, Citizens Financial Group, also serves on the Center’s board of directors.
“We thank the Citizens Bank Foundation for its generous support,” said David Eisner, National Constitution Center President and CEO. “Financial literacy and responsibility are crucial to our democracy. The Center is pleased to welcome these students and expand our offerings on these important and timely topics, made even more relevant by the economic challenges facing the nation and many of its citizens.”
Participating schools include Jackson Elementary School, Elkin Elementary School, Taylor Elementary School, Arise Academy Charter High School, Overbrook High School, Swenson Arts & Technology High School, John Bartram High School, Belmont Academy Charter School, Kensington CAPA High School, Mastery Charter High School, Martin Luther King High School, Green Woods Charter School, South Philadelphia High School, Leeds High School and Vaux High School.
Students will have an opportunity to tour the Center’s core exhibition, The Story of We the People, including the popular Signers’ Hall; see the award-winning live theater presentation, Freedom Rising; and participate in a variety of interactive shows.
During the Pass the Citizenship Test: Dollars and Sense show, students will compete in teams to determine who knows the most about financial responsibility as a key component of active citizenship. Teams will be asked questions about Alexander Hamilton and the history of the banking industry, the importance of personal financial responsibility and ways they can ensure their own financial well-being.
Students also will attend a special Bill of Rights workshop including the fast-paced game show, Who Wants to be a Bill-ionaire? Participants will answer questions about their basic rights, and the audience will be polled to see who knows if justice is being served. Students will then join in a debate about basic freedoms and the amendments that protect our rights today.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to bring our students to the National Constitution Center and thank the Citizens Bank Foundation for its sponsorship of this important program,” said Francisco Durán, Assistant Superintendent for Promise Academies. “The Center's programming will bring financial and constitutional concepts to life in addition to core social studies principles including democracy, justice, authority and privacy. This is a special opportunity for students to grow as citizens and encourage their economic well-being for years to come."
About the Citizens Bank Foundation
Citizens Bank Foundation is a subsidiary of the Citizens Charitable Foundation, which is a charitable contributions vehicle of Citizens Financial Group, Inc., RBS Citizens, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. The foundation’s support is focused on housing, community development and basic human needs.
About the National Constitution Center
The National Constitution Center, located at 525 Arch St. on Philadelphia’s Independence Mall, is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing public understanding of the U.S. Constitution and the ideas and values it represents. The Center serves as a museum, an education center, and a forum for debate on constitutional issues. The museum dramatically tells the story of the Constitution from Revolutionary times to the present through more than 100 interactive, multimedia exhibits, film, photographs, text, sculpture and artifacts, and features a powerful, award-winning theatrical performance,
“Freedom Rising.” The Center also houses the Annenberg Center for Education and Outreach, which serves as the hub for national constitutional education. Also, as a nonpartisan forum for constitutional discourse, the Center presents – without endorsement – programs that contain diverse viewpoints on a broad range of issues. For more information, call 215.409.6700 or visit www.constitutioncenter.org.