“If you want to harvest in one year, grow a crop. If you want to harvest in ten years, grow a tree. If you want a harvest that will last a lifetime, grow people.”
This Chinese proverb describes the Front Street Foundation’s Youth Analyst mentorship program for any high-school student interested in having a deep professional mentorship experience in the field of investing. If you know of a student that might be interested in learning to invest alongside pros, clip this column and start a conversation.
Most often students are taught the basics of money and investing through the prism of short-term results. In fact, many of our kids’ mentorship experiences are coupled with something I’d consider to be Snapchat-like outcomes. That is, their experiences are built on the idea of immediate results and only come with fleeting professional interactions.
While these experiences do allow for valuable introductions to new ideas for students, the Front Street Foundation’s Youth Analyst program goes deeper and longer. In place of popular weeks-long stock market games, our mentorship program is a multi-year educational opportunity built on the idea of self-paced learning consistently guided by financial professionals.
In addition, too often students are only introduced to the basics of money and investing through their parents or grandparents who have the means to lend them access to a developed network of professional mentors. It goes without saying that not every talented kid is given such a head start in life.
For this reason, the eligibility for participation in the Front Street Foundation’s Youth Analyst program is simple. The cost is zero and a student’s eligibility is based solely on their interest and their sustained effort to learn.
The primary list of skills developed by participating students include the important ability to think, to find and interpret information, to speak, to listen, to write and to work with other people. These skills take years to develop and, as the proverb above says so eloquently, they are the very skills that will be harvested for a lifetime.
Introductory meetings regarding the Front Street Foundation’s Youth Analyst program will be held for curious students, parents, grandparents and interested mentors throughout September and October. To be notified of upcoming meeting dates, please visit FrontStreetFoundation.org and follow the prompts.
For those interested in learning more about how you can contribute as a professional mentor to the Front Street Foundation’s Youth Analyst program, we welcome your participation, collaboration and creativity. We encourage active and retired investment professionals interested in participating in this mentorship opportunity to call (231) 714-6459.
Front Street Foundation is a Traverse City-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization delivering its Youth Analyst professional mentorship program and its monthly Money Series financial education workshops in cooperation with the Traverse Area District Library and the Grand Traverse County Senior Center Network.