Young consumers are often an easy target for scam artists due to their high disposable income. In order to educate these young adults, your BBB created the Student Ambassador Program, which strives to teach high school students to be proactive in their marketplace research, and to identify and protect themselves from scams and fraud.
While most high school educational programs are structured around an expert who spouts facts and statistics to a younger audience, the BBB Student Ambassador Program trains high school age students to be marketplace "experts," who, in turn, educate their peers.
Since the Student Ambassador Program began in 2006, it has reached thousands of young consumers from all over the San Diego County. In early January of this year, the Better Business Bureau Foundation (BBB) sent out invitations to high school juniors or seniors to participate in the 2012 BBB Student Ambassador Program.
With a record breaking 42 students from approximately 19 different high schools in the program this year, we are hoping to reach the highest number of young adults in the program's history.
After the students were chosen, they each received two hours of training on the educational information that they are asked to share. After training, the student ambassadors were able to work individually or in pairs to develop and deliver their presentation to a small peer group. Each student ambassador or team is then required to give at least one presentation a month between the months of March and May.
Although the Student Ambassador Program does provide deserving students with a scholarship incentive for the greatest number of students presented to (first place $2500, second place $1500, or third place $1000), the main purpose of the program is to bring information about scams and frauds to the entry-level consumer.
The BBB hopes the Student Ambassador Program will empower young consumers to make wise financial decisions and teach them to become savvy consumers in the marketplace.
Every student who participates in the program will receive a certificate upon completion, designating them an official Student Ambassador of the Better Business Bureau and recognizing their contribution of volunteer time toward marketplace ethics.
A recognition event will be held in late May 2012 to award certificates and scholarships. Not only is this a fun experience for young adults, your community will benefit from the value of this important and relevant education.
For more information about the Student Ambassador Program, visit bbb.org or email Andy Ramos at firstname.lastname@example.org.