USU Extension Receives $2 Million Grant for Financial Wellness Education

By Shelby Ruud Jarman | September 26, 2023



Utah State University Extension recently received a $2 million grant to bring personal finance education to more Utah residents.

The Department of Workforce Services Financial Capability Grant will fund Empowering Financial Wellness (EFW), a USU Extension program. The program’s mission is to empower women, limited-income households, and community educators across Utah to make informed financial decisions to serve their life goals and improve financial wellness. The grant will fund webinars, workshops, resources, educational outreach, and more, from now through June 2026.

“Utahns are still feeling the pinch of inflation and housing costs,” said Amanda Christensen, USU Extension professor and member of the EFW team. “With student loan repayment on the horizon, many folks are having to pivot to make ends meet.”

The EFW program focuses on critical financial topics such as budgeting, managing debt, preparing for homeownership, surviving inflation, investing, and more.

“Our experts teach a variety of topics both in-person and online,” said Melanie Jewkes, USU Extension professor and member of the EFW team. “There’s something for everyone, including a self-paced, video-based online course that gives participants a personal finance 101 refresh.”

EFW is an award-winning program, receiving accolades such as the Utah Best of State award for both 2022 and 2023. 

“The participants who are engaging in our programs have reported increased savings, an increase in their ability to handle unexpected financial burdens, and a general steady increase in financial well-being,” said Andrea Schmutz, USU Extension assistant professor and member of the EFW team.

Upcoming webinars and classes can be found here, with more events added periodically. Groups and individuals can apply to host a class here.

Learn more about the research-based programs and resources from USU Extension by visiting