Shannon’s Reflection: Peer Money Mentor Program

While participating in ACC’s Peer Money Mentor Program, my entire perception of finances has changed. I know that may sound dramatic, but it’s true! Before this program, I avoided finances and finance based conversations like it was COVID….but this program really did help me break down those walls of discomfort and change the way I viewed the world of personal finance.

I wanna rewind to the beginning of 2020 when I still had the pleasure of meeting face to face and learning from the other incredible students, speakers, and staff that were a part of this program. Every Friday, I went into our meeting room at noon and then I would leave with a head full of knowledge that I could not wait to implement and pass on to friends, family, and other students. Aside from all of the topics that taught me an in-depth understanding of financial literacy, one of my favorite topics that we discussed, multiple times, was how finances affected our emotional well-being. I think this was my favorite topic because financial stress is something that almost everyone can relate to and it’s a topic people can connect to on a very personal level.

Two major components of this program is 1) to teach students how to have conversations and 2) how to utilize resources to improve your financial well-being. After going through the spring training, I was able to break down some of my walls of discomfort and use my newfound knowledge to help other students. One way I did this was by creating a scholarship committee for the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society at ACC. In this committee, we aim to help each other find and apply for scholarships and also voice concerns and questions over navigating finances as a college student. 

Last fall and during this spring semester, I had the privilege of continuing the PMM program as a PMM Leader. I stepped WAY outside of my comfort zone and tried new things like creating IG Lives and a personal video that covered financial topics that I felt confident about. Doing this, along with these blog posts and other projects, helped me learn different ways that I could use my creativity and knowledge to share vital information. These projects helped me learn how much I love sharing information and resources with others because I, myself, understand how intimidating it can be to seek them out. The fact that I took advantage of this opportunity while we are experiencing a pandemic seems like fate. This program helped connect me to my community, keep my personal finances not only afloat, but maintained and thriving, and provided inspiration in a time where motivation was sometimes scarce. I cannot thank Ayeesha Green, the PMM coordinator, enough. She introduced me to so many incredible people and a world of information I used to be so afraid of. She also introduced me to a part of myself I am so happy to embrace and build upon. I cannot thank this program, and everyone involved, enough!