JAG graduate returns to tell others about banking matters

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By The Staff

SHEPHERDSVILLE -- Katie Bell graduated from the JAG Program in August 2004, earning her General Education Diploma. Never in her wildest dreams did she think she would come back to JAG to encourage others and talk about money; but, she did.

On March 19, 2009, Katie returned to the classroom to talk to JAG students about smart money management. Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) is a program offered by Bullitt County Adult and Community Education Program that helps individuals earn credentials, find employment and enter college and/or training programs.

Katie is a bank teller and very interested in serving customers. In fact, Keith Griffee, president of PBI Bank credits Katie with developing the bank’s motto of “Wanting customers to leave with a smile and return with a friend.”

Her enthusiasm is contagious!

This is the second time that PBI Bank has taught a 9-hour class on financial issues covering topics such as banking, checking, credit and debit cards, loans and other financial topics. Various employees from their three locations take part in the presentations.

Tracy Hansel, Branch Manager of PBI said, “The students asked great questions and were so willing to learn. It seems the economic times and the media coverage on credit has reached the residents of this community.

Young people are taking notice that credit and a good banking history is important. These students are going to do fine.

They are young adults that will be our future home owners, our future customers, and the future of our community.”

Katie encouraged the students to stay in school. “You have a future that can be anything you want. Keep working toward what you want to do and don’t let anything or anyone stop you.”

Her message was well received.

Kyle Kobrock, 21, is working toward earning his GED.

He said, “It’s great to have a successful graduate come back and offer words of encouragement; as well as, share information on banking. It’s exciting.”

“She shows her intelligence, persistence and strong will, not to mention fun, personality when she speaks about her past and how her future looks. She encouraged all the students to never give up and to stick it out, even in hard times, that’s what she did and look where she is now,” said Samantha Lester, 16.

Katie’s presentation was covered by various media. She said she didn’t realize she was a local hero. However, her co-workers, teachers and friends have known it for years.

She is active on the “Relay for Life” committee and is currently organizing a Karaoke night to raise money.

She is involved in every activity and constantly encouraging others. She believes in giving back. A local hero making a difference, one life at a time.

The Youth/JAG Program is funded by the Governor’s Discretionary Funds and the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) through the KentuckianaWorks.