Banc Of California has been a partner with Youth Business Alliance for almost as long as YBA has been in existence. The partnership started in 2015, just three years after YBA was founded, when Banc Of California started sending guest speakers into high school classrooms.
“Financial Literacy has always been a key focus of our Corporate Social Responsibility program and that’s why our partnership with YBA is such a great fit,” shared Shannon Vesely, Banc Of California’s Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) Program Manager. “As a bank, we provide 3-5 financial literacy workshops a month to different organizations. We do this because we believe that financial literacy is just so important. A lot of people take it for granted that they have this knowledge, but many people simply don’t. That’s why it’s so important to us to reach out to underserved and at-risk communities and provide resources and tools to help them gain this critical knowledge.”
Following guest speaking, the relationship between YBA and Banc of California blossomed into a more robust financial literacy program where YBA students from various high schools were brought to Banc Of California’s Santa Ana headquarters for in-person tours. “We typically have had a YBA class come for a three-hour, in-person tour about once a month,” shared Shannon. “In addition to a tour of our headquarters, a panel of volunteer speakers – employees from IT, marketing, human resources, lending and other key departments – present to the students and share what they do and how they landed their job. It’s an incredibly enlightening experience for both the students and our volunteer staff.”
In addition to student tours, Banc of California employees recently volunteered at the mock interviews at JFK High School in Granada Hills, and employee volunteers also acted as mentors and judges for the “Shark Tank”-style competition during the YBA Summer Business Camp last July 2022.
Shannon has seen how Banc Of California’s involvement has truly made a difference for YBA students simply based on the student’s level of engagement and the feedback received. “During one recent headquarters tour, we hosted students from a school specializing in film studies. One of our speakers was from our private banking department and specialized in the film industry. The students on the tour had lots of questions for him! It’s fantastic when there’s a specific topic that students and our Banc of California volunteers can connect on.”
Looking ahead to 2023, Banc of California plans to continue to host monthly student tours, with many of their employee volunteers planning to participate every time a YBA school is scheduled to come. “Our employees love to share advice as well as details about their journey of how they landed their position at Banc of California,” Shannon said. “Our partnership with YBA clearly supports our company’s dedication to important issues like Financial Literacy and our overall focus on service to others and giving back to the communities in which we live and work.”