24 Bay Area high school students awarded scholarships as part of PG&E's financial education program

Twenty-four Bay Area high schoolers were awarded college scholarships from the PG&E Foundation Saturday. 

The high school students spent the last two semesters attending weekend classes as part of the economic equity and financial education pilot program taught at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business

Scholarship recipient and senior Otis Word said the program was great because they learned about financial literacy. 

Word, a student at McClymonds High School in Oakland, was accepted into all 13 universities he applied to and will attend Stanford University in the fall to study computer science and engineering.

Jimi Harris, the chief of community relations came up with the idea following the death of George Floyd in 2020. He wanted to create a long-term and sustainable way to close the racial wealth gap in America. 


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"We decided to invest in a racial equity program to benefit African Americans," Harris said. 

The program also taught students something they said they wished they learned more about in public high school—personal finances.

Harris said the program touched on everything from budgeting and investing to company valuation. 

Word said he believes finance should be a core class taught in public schools. 

"Becoming an adult leaving high school [and] not knowing this, it leaves you off balance," Word said. "It's crucial information you need to know to be able to have financial security in life."