MCCS offers Personal Financial Management classes

by Pfc. Kelcey Seymour, Marine Corps Installations Pacific
Stripes Okinawa

CAMP FOSTER, OKINAWA, Japan – Marines learned to control their finances during a Personal Financial Management class Aug. 16 at Marine Corps Community Services aboard Camp Foster.

The class teaches the fundamentals of personal finance including retirement savings, investments, and emergency savings.

“This class is about the basics of money management,” said Anthony Green, a personal financial management specialist with MCCS. “It’s about taking control of your resources, money, and making it productive for you. Most people work and they continue to work without making their money work for them. Until that money produces for you, you have to produce for it for the rest of your life.”

During the class, Marines took an in-depth look at how much they spend each month on food, recreation, clothing, and more. By doing this they are able to identify where they can limit spending to maximize savings.

“Financial management has a lot to do with personal habits,” said Lance Cpl. Michael Li, an engineer equipment mechanic with 3rd Maintenance Battalion, Combat Logistics Regiment 35, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force. “Actually getting the numbers on paper and seeing how much I’m spending every month, versus how much I am putting away in savings shocked me.”

The class was open and judgment free. Students were encouraged to participate in class discussions and exercises that included their own personal history.

“What caught my attention was the personal anecdotes from both the instructor and the fellow Marines participating,” said Li. “Hearing what they have gone through, and bringing that in relation to myself, I thought if they were able to fight through their times of difficulty then what I’m going through will be just as overcomeable.”

According to Green, the class can be life changing. If Marines learn how to apply basic rules early, then when they retire, they can enjoy their financial stability.

“My hope for this class is that everyone who attends learns something and can articulate it to someone else,” said Green. “If they learn something, they are adding value to their fellow Marines and ultimately they will do better financially.”

MCCS offers the Personal Financial Management class twice a month and personal management specialists are available for consultations.

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