Old Bridge High School freshman participates in virtual financial literacy summit

Kavya Venkatesan of Old Bridge was selected to represent New Jersey through the local Junior Achievement organization.

OLD BRIDGE – A freshman at Old Bridge High School participated in a virtual financial literacy summit presented by CNBC and the Junior Achievement organization.

The focus of the summit was on levelling the playing field for students through education and financial literacy.

Kavya Venkatesan was selected to represent New Jersey through the local Junior Achievement organization and ask a question to an esteemed panel.

She was selected by CNBC producers after providing them with a list of questions she wanted to ask the panel, according to information provided by the Old Bridge School District. She was among 23 teens selected from a nation-wide applicant pool.

She asked the panel: “How can today’s teens develop an adaptive mindset and prepare for the future of work?”

“It was definitely an empowering conversation,” the 14-year-old said in the statement.

Venkatesan was featured in a CNBC news article and shared how she developed her knowledge in financial literacy and investing through courses, leadership opportunities, and clubs.

“My valuable experiences in writing have definitely enabled me to grow as a public speaker and communicator so that I can be involved in initiatives like this summit,” she said in the statement.

New Jersey in one of 21 states who mandate personal finance coursework. To date, Venkatesan completed an online class last summer with the Future Business Leaders of America. In addition, her parents have taught her about investing and buying stocks.

According to Venkatesan, her counselors Katelyn Tivald and Amanda Walsh informed her about a course acceleration process. So, she opted to complete an online personal finance course last summer through Educere. The credit for the course was recognized by Old Bridge High School.

“The knowledge I gained from this allowed me to be involved in the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) club,” she said in the statement.

Venkatesan also credited her FBLA advisers Maria Simone and Liz Todaro with supporting her to create online training for FBLA members as well as complete and earn Business Achievement Awards.

“Mrs. Simone and Mrs. Todaro have definitely provided a platform through FBLA to connect, learn, share ideas, and get involved,” she said in the statement.

Simone was not surprised by the teen’s success at the summit.

“Although I have only known Kavya since September 2020, she has continuously stood out among her peers throughout this school year,” Simone said in the statement. “She has taken on projects by her own initiative, cultivates school camaraderie, and accomplishes her academics with the highest achievements. I look forward to making our FBLA chapter the best that it can be over the next three years with Kavya as one of our leaders.”

The teen also enrolled in another independent business course entitled Bloomberg Market Concepts.

“This course taught me about investing, the economy, and stock market,” she said in the statement. “I was also able to use this knowledge to invest in stocks and have my own portfolio. This course was great for personal growth and inspired me to gain financial independence at an early age. “

At the summit, she said she was able to develop critical thinking skills and learned how to make strategic decisions.

“The summit went really well, and I enjoyed being a part of this insightful conversation,” Venkatesan said in the statement. “There were a lot of valuable takeaways from the summit, and I wanted to share it with other Knights so that more students can feel empowered to own their economic success.”