Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Social Innovation (M.A.)

Degree Program

Integrative, Religious, and Intercultural Studies

First Advisor

Joel Wendland-Liu

Academic Year



In the last few years, the concern for financial illiteracy among teenagers has only grown as the economy has shifted. Many teenagers feel unprepared and unsecured moving forward with their finances as adults. This issue is intensified further among low-income and marginalized youths who deal with additional hardship in their lives. Accessibility is a huge issue among teenagers and the role of financial literacy of their lives in education is often predetermined by government officials and policies they can only really advocate for change for but cannot vote on. In this research I explore the concept of utilizing social innovation to bridge the gap scene in politics and collaborating with nonprofits to establish an effective financial literacy program for youth. By studying three programs that are local, state, or nationally associated, I examine the programs and tools they offer their clients to develop an understanding of their usefulness and how it could be applied into a program.