Daily News

AIC to Launch Center for Financial Literacy and Economic Development with $1,050,000 Grant

SPRINGFIELD — U.S. Rep. Richard Neal joined American International College (AIC) interim President Nicolle Cestero to announce a $1,050,000 earmark to launch a Center for Financial Literacy and Economic Development.

The allocation was made possible through congressionally directed spending from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Neal included funding for this project in the FY 2024 spending bill that was signed into law by President Biden on March 9.

“As we close out Financial Literacy Month, I cannot think of a better way to highlight the importance of financial education and the role it plays in creating opportunities for personal economic growth. The funding announced today will help establish AIC’s Center for Financial Literacy and Economic Prosperity, an initiative that will uplift economically disadvantaged residents throughout the Springfield community,” Neal said.

“I would like to thank AIC for their longstanding commitment to continued efforts to provide educational opportunities to a diverse community. This center will give residents access to educational programs that would otherwise not be available, allowing them to develop the tools to make educated financial decisions and putting them on a path to economic success and independence.”

Cestero added that “this groundbreaking initiative underscores AIC’s dedication to improving the financial well-being of Springfield residents. The project aligns seamlessly with AIC’s values of accessibility and opportunity. This new center, ideally located on the AIC campus in the geographic heart of the city, will serve as a beacon of hope for our community. I would like to extend a special thank-you to Congressman Neal for his invaluable support in securing the crucial funding necessary for AIC to launch this endeavor.”

The Center for Financial Literacy and Economic Prosperity at AIC is a transformative initiative that will bolster the financial well-being of Springfield residents. Funding will support the rehabilitation of an AIC campus building to house the center, underscoring its commitment to community development. This project seeks to combat financial illiteracy and empower economically disadvantaged individuals and families in Springfield by providing comprehensive financial education, research, and outreach programs.

AIC’s longstanding dedication to accessibility and opportunity aligns seamlessly with the center’s mission to address economic disparities in the region. With the support of key stakeholders, including Springfield Mayor Dominic Sarno and the Springfield Housing Authority, the center will offer free, multilingual services focusing on education, research, and community engagement. By fostering financial empowerment and economic resilience, the Center for Financial Literacy and Economic Prosperity at AIC aims to catalyze economic development in Springfield and beyond, driving sustainable progress and prosperity for all.