Integrity Matters Broadcasts
October 22 , 2008
Recently, two Monterey Peninsula residents, Linda and Mike Dorn, went on a buying spree on behalf of eight Pay It Forward scholarship recipients. They purchased “typical” items that are popular for college-age impulse shoppers. They compared prices in order to provide financial counsel to these college students through my current Executives-in-Residence project at California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB). The objective of their spending excursion was to educate young people on ways to leverage dollars, getting the most from their available financial resources.
The Dorn’s, benefactors and mentors in and through CSUMB’s Executives-in-Residence Pay It Forward program, priced and purchased items from convenience stores and “big box” retailers – underscoring the premium often paid by impulse shoppers. They focused on typical items students might buy: candy bars, snack crackers, cookies, batteries, chap-stick, aspirin tablets, gasoline, bottled water and canned soft-drinks.
Students got the picture quickly. A 48-pack of candy bars, purchased in bulk, reduced the per-bar price by more than 50%. Soft-drinks from vending machines can sometimes cost as much as 400% more than when purchased in bulk. Bottled water is another cost-saving opportunity, as much as 700%.
Pay It Forward scholarship recipients learning to spend wisely –sandwiched between Mike and Linda Dorn.
The purpose of the activity was not to become advocates for “big box” stores. However, those who leverage their dollars effectively, frequently and consistently practice prudent planning, self-discipline; including avoiding grocery shopping when hungry and not using a list.
To further emphasize the importance of working within a budget, these first eight Pay It Forward recipients kept a record of all their purchases for two weeks. They were then asked which items they “needed” versus which items they “wanted.” The results were eye-opening. For young university students as well as more experienced folks who might have developed less disciplined purchasing habits, it is wise to develop dollar-conserving practices to more efficiently stretch financial resources - especially when the economic health of the nation is still a little “wobbly.”
Waste not, want not! Perhaps the recent Wall Street calamity, creating a $700 billion “bailout” or “investment” depending upon your perspective, is a wake-up call to practice smart shopping.
Executives-in-Residence supporters, Mike and Linda Dorn, hand
Julio Castro,a Pay It Forward Scholarship recipient, a
symbolic gift during a July 23 barbecue in honor of the
program’s first group of students.
Pay It Forward is an ON-RAMP FOR FIRST GENERERATION COLLEGE STUDENTS FROM MONTEREY COUNTY at CSUMB and goes beyond the traditional arms-length transaction of providing deserving students with financial assistance for higher education by fostering an ongoing, mutually accountable relationship between recipients and leader-mentors. Scholarship recipients are required to "pay it forward" by providing their own service to youngsters through a partnership with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Monterey County. The goal is to develop confident and enthusiastic young people who gain both the means to complete their education and the tools to make their own contribution to others. Certainly, sound personal financial discipline reflects integrity and leads to success. Pay It Forward provides access – the ON RAMP - to opportunity.
James F. Bracher
Dimension Five Consultants, Inc.
Bracher Center for Integrity in Leadership
P.O. Box 22467
Carmel, California 93922
James F. (Jim) Bracher, Director
Executives in Residence
University Corporation at Monterey Bay
California State University Monterey Bay
100 Campus Center,
Building 201 - Suite 101
Seaside, California 93955
Phone: (831) 582-5015
Phone: direct: (831) 582-5038
(831) 582-5019 Fax