Financial Literacy with P.W. Shaffer

PW Shaffer

By Sandy Spring Bank

Sandy Spring Bank employees take pride in providing the communities they serve with financial education tools and resources, so that the next generation is equipped to lead fiscally responsible lives.

P.W. Shaffer, a Market Relationship Manager, has been with the bank for more than eight years, and he has done a remarkable job educating students in our communities about the importance of finance.  Here is what P.W. has to say about his efforts to empower students across our footprint.

Describe your history with teaching financial literacy.

I started five years ago when a colleague asked me to accompany him to discuss in-school banking with local elementary school students.  Once I started talking and interacting with the kids, I realized this is something that I have to make part of my job here at Sandy Spring Bank.  I have developed great relationships with teachers across our region, and I have been fortunate enough to be invited to visit their classrooms to talk to students about banking, credit, and financial literacy.  I have also been a guest judge at various schools, evaluating students proposed business plans. And before the start of the school year, I was invited to meet with middle and high school teachers in Frederick County to discuss creative ways they can bring financial literacy to life in their classrooms.

Do you have a favorite moment in time or story from teaching financial literacy?

It’s hard to pinpoint one specific moment in time, but I can say with certainty that my experiences with both students and teachers have left a lasting impact on my life.  I’ve been fortunate enough to empower hundreds of students over the past five years by sharing my knowledge of banking and financial literacy.

How has Sandy Spring Bank supported your efforts?

Sandy Spring Bank has encouraged me to maximize financial literacy opportunities.  I continue to look for ways for myself and other Market Relationship Managers, Branch Managers, Private Bankers and others get involved at schools in our market.  Sandy Spring Bank also gave me the opportunity to attend Maryland Banking School to further develop my banking, management and leadership skills.  Sandy Spring is more than a bank, it’s a family that has enabled me to flourish and make a difference in the community where I live, work and raise a family.  

What do you hope to achieve through financial literacy?

I simply want to make a difference.  I hope that some of the students that I have worked with use what they’ve learned to make their lives and communities better in some way. Who knows, maybe some of them will even enter the world of banking. My goal is to place our young community members in a stronger position to compete in our challenging global economy, and so I’ll continue to seek out creative and fun ways to increase student engagement.