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For the second straight year, Lakeland College has received statewide recognition for its efforts to improve financial literacy.
The Lakeland College Center for Economic Education, led by Lakeland College faculty member Scott Niederjohn, and the director of Lakeland's Milwaukee center, Tim O'Driscoll, were each selected for 2012 Wisconsin Financial Literacy Awards by the Governor's Council on Financial Literacy.
The winners, which include individuals and organizations, are recognized for their work to advance the cause of personal financial knowledge among Wisconsin citizens. An awards ceremony will be held this spring at the state capital in Madison.
In 2011, Scott Niederjohn, Lakeland College's Charlotte and Walter Kohler Assistant Professor of Economics and Business, was named a winner in the inaugural year of this honor.
"It's a real honor and surprise to be honored for a second year in a row," Niederjohn said. "I'm very proud of what our Center for Economic Education has been able to accomplish over the past eight years, and I look forward to the future. I'm also pleased that my good friend and Lakeland colleague Tim O'Driscoll was honored for his distinguished career in economic and financial education."
Lakeland's Center for Economic Education, started by Niederjohn in 2005, presents innovative programs for teachers and other groups to enhance their knowledge of economic literacy with the goal of bringing this knowledge to students throughout Wisconsin.
Employing the expertise of the academic community and experts in business and government, the center utilizes the best current information on economic literacy, putting them into a teachable context to provide students and teachers with the knowledge to confront the challenging economic environment they will encounter.
Lakeland's center has conducted a highly successful financial literacy workshop for teachers for six years at Green Bay's Lambeau Field. The center has also produced many curriculum contributions, including the Gen I Revolution personal finance game, and popular high school books like Learning Earning Investing for a New Generation and Teaching Financial Crisis.
In the last two years, the center has served more than 850 teachers in more than two dozen programs under Niederjohn's direction.
O'Driscoll joined Lakeland's staff in 2010 as the director of the college's Milwaukee Center for Economic Education. O'Driscoll was given the award for his long and distinguished commitment to financial literacy.
His career began as an economics teacher at Arrowhead high school. O'Driscoll has remained active, making more than 39 presentations to 2,500 teachers this past year on Lakeland's behalf. O'Driscoll also serves as the official scorer for the Milwaukee Brewers.
He is a member of the Board of Directors of Economics Wisconsin and was selected to serve on the Planning Committee to create a national test on economic literacy. O'Driscoll was also selected as a writer and editor for the NAEP National Macroeconomics Test.
He is a member of the Wisconsin Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame and the Land O'Lakes Baseball Hall of Fame and the Arrowhead High School baseball field is named for him, recognizing his 35 years as their head coach.
"The recipients of the Wisconsin Financial Literacy Award are helping Wisconsinites of all ages improve their personal finance skills in our schools, in the workplace and in communities across the state," Governor Scott Walker said. "These citizen leaders equip students, parents, peers and consumers with the necessary tools to make informed decisions about their own money, which improves individual quality of life, as well as the Wisconsin economy."
Criteria used to determine the financial literacy award recipients includes innovative implementation, demonstrated measureable results, collaboration with partners, whether the effort was statewide or had the potential to be statewide and whether the effort was focused on needs-based groups.
The Governor's Council on Financial Literacy was created to measurably improve the financial literacy of Wisconsin citizens. Niederjohn is a member of the council.