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LRSC launches financial literacy programs

By   Erin Wood

The Paul Hoghaug Library at Lake Region State College is pleased to announce that better financial and investor information and educational programs are coming to Lake Region State College and Devils Lake with the launch of Smart investing@your library®.

Lake Region State College’s Paul Hoghaug Library has been awarded a $77,250 grant from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation and the American Library Association as part of the nationwide Smart investing@your library® program.

The Paul Hoghaug Library was one of 21 libraries nationwide recently chosen through a competitive process to receive a grant from the American Library Association (ALA) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation as part of Smart investing@your library®. This prestigious grant will help to build the capacity of Lake Region State College Library to provide effective, unbiased financial and investor education to the community.

With the funding, the Paul Hoghaug Library will offer new services and resources for students and community members, such as budgeting and financial literacy programs for students. The grant also will allow hands-on marketing experience for students.

“It’s an honor to be tapped for this generous grant from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. The funding will make an array of free, unbiased financial information programs possible in our community,” said Celeste Ertelt, Paul Hoghaug Librarian.

“Smart investing@your library® gives us the chance to innovate. We’re excited by the prospect of collaborating in new ways with trusted community partners to deliver information that helps people build a brighter financial future.”

Lake Region State College will lead a personal financial management and investor education initiative serving college audiences and the broader community in northeastern North Dakota – a largely rural area inclusive of Grand Forks Air Force Base and Camp Grafton. The audiences comprising the project include: dual-credit, full-time, part-time, military and veteran students; military families residing in the area and patrons of public libraries in the region. The project will deliver seminars on budgeting basics, credit 101 and action plans for saving and investing. In addition to Lake Region State College, project partners include the LRSC center at Grand Forks Air Force Base, Nelson/Ramsey County Veterans Services, the Northeast Education Services Cooperative, NDSU Extension Service/ Ramsey County and the Citizens Community Credit Union.

“The libraries participating in this grant program make reliable financial information and education readily accessible in their communities,” said Gerri Walsh, President of the FINRA Foundation. “Libraries are paying close attention to their communities’ needs and aspirations, and can respond in creative, sustainable ways to help residents achieve financial goals for themselves and their families.”
Smart investing@your library® is a partnership between the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA), a division of the American Library Association, and the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. The program supports public libraries and community college libraries across the country in their efforts to meet financial education needs at the local level.

The Reference and User Services Association is the foremost organization of reference and information professionals who make the connections between people and the information sources, services and collection materials they need.

Established in 1876, the American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world. It strives to provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all. For more information, visit

FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, is the largest independent regulator for all securities firms doing business in the United States. FINRA is dedicated to investor protection and market integrity through effective and efficient regulation and complementary compliance and technology-based services. FINRA touches virtually every aspect of the securities business—from registering and educating all industry participants to examining securities firms, writing rules, enforcing those rules and the federal securities laws, informing and educating the investing public, providing trade reporting and other industry utilities, and administering the largest dispute resolution forum for investors and firms. For more information, visit
The FINRA Investor Education Foundation supports innovative research and educational projects that give underserved Americans the knowledge, skills and tools necessary for financial success throughout life. For details about grant programs and other FINRA Foundation initiatives, visit