City Treasurer Melissa Conyears-Ervin Launches New Comprehensive Financial Education Program

Brian Berg, CTO

Chicago, IL (April 16, 2024) — City Treasurer Melissa Conyears-Ervin today announced the City Treasurer’s Office (CTO) has teamed up with Chase Bank, the Chicago Urban League, and TransUnion to create the Money Matters Institute (MMI), a new comprehensive financial education program kicking off on April 23. MMI will offer Chicagoans of all ages and incomes with the money management skills and knowledge that will put them on a path to a brighter, more prosperous future.

According to a recent study by Primerica, Inc., two-thirds of the middle-class report that they believe their education failed to prepare them to manage their personal finances, that they are not saving enough for retirement, and that money worries are a large cause of the stress that’s negatively affecting their physical and emotional health.

“Having a better understanding of how money works is an effective way to address the worries people have about their financial futures, which is why a financial education program like Money Matters Institute is so important,” said Treasurer Conyears-Ervin. “In order for people to feel confident, it is critical to equip them with the skills and knowledge to make sound, informed financial decisions,” added Treasurer Conyears-Ervin.

The CTO’s new Money Matters Institute is a convenient and easy-to-understand financial education and wellness program offering wealth creation information from experts in financial services. It aims to empower Chicagoans with the skills and tools to navigate today’s volatile and uncertain economy.

MMI is built around a three-step approach of financial programs, with the first step, “Financial Fundamentals,” featuring six workshops, running April 23 through June 29. The second step, “Money Mastery,” will run July through September, and the third step, “Wealth Accelerator,” will take place September through November. Participants can choose how they wish to attend each workshop, either by Zoom or in-person. All workshops are available to participants at no charge. In addition, free one-on-one counseling through the Chicago Urban League is available.

All webinar workshops are presented from 12pm -1pm. The In-person workshops take place from 6 – 7:30 pm at the Chicago Urban League, 4510 S. Michigan Ave. All workshops are available at no charge, however advance registration is required. To register, visit.

Session 1: “Financial Fundamentals (April 23-June 29)

The following workshops will be presented by the Chicago Urban League, Chase Bank, and TransUnion:

Money Goals and Values

Sometimes, our financial decisions put us in a situation that is stressful and counter-productive, either because our decisions were unexpected, unplanned or emergencies, we were unaware of a better option. MMI’s first program is designed to get to the root of how you make financial choices and to lay out a path for stronger decision-making in the future.

April 23: Webinar.
April 25: In-person. 

Crack the Credit Code:

Learn how credit shapes your ability to make significant purchases and access financial opportunities. Gain a better understanding of credit scores and reports, the factors that affect your credit score, and how credit works to effectively manage your finances and help you make informed decisions. Discover how optimizing your credit score can open access to opportunities such as low-interest loans, better housing, and improved job opportunities.  

May 7: Webinar.
May 9: In-person.

Budget and Save

Financial services experts will share the best strategies and tools for managing money. Learn how much to save, which apps to use, which debts to focus on, how well you’re saving for your age, and more. This program will help you create a budget to keep tabs on expenses and provide a plan to follow to make it easier to accumulate savings and meet your financial goals.

May 21: Webinar.
May 23: In-person.

Good Debt vs Bad Debt

Debt can be good or bad, depending on how it’s used. In this program, you will learn how debt can be used to create financial stability and build wealth, and which debt offers no long-term benefits.

June 4: Webinar.
June 6: In-person.

Planning for the Future

Gain valuable advice and information on how to budget, save, and plan for future goals—like a child’s education, a new home, or a stable retirement. 

June 18: Webinar.
June 20: In-person.

Comprehensive Recap Day

Did you miss a Session 1 workshop? Financial experts will recap the content and subjects covered in all Session 1 workshops.

Sat., June 29 from 9am to 12:30pm

In addition to in-person and virtual programs, MMI also offers one-on-one financial coaching at no charge to participants. Financial coaches from the Chicago Urban League will be available to meet one-on-one to address a variety of financial issues. Anyone interested in coaching is required to attend one in-person or virtual workshop first. Some of the topics in this one-on-one coaching include:

  • Basic financial knowledge
  • Managing debt
  • Money management
  • Identifying and learning what your financial goals are and creating a strategy to work towards them
  • Understanding how money impacts your personal relationship and self-esteem
  • Receiving public assistance
  • Understanding your credit score and how to improve it

For additional information about the MMI “Financial Fundamentals,” Step 1, Step 2 (July 9 – August 29), and Step 3 (September 10 – November 20), or other financial education programs from the CTO, visit

“We know that the more you learn about how money works, the more confident and successful you’ll be building wealth today for tomorrow,” said Treasurer Conyears-Ervin. “It’s never too late to start learning, and the first steps can start with financial education at the Money Matters Institute.”