2021 VBA Bank Day Scholarship Program Student Resources
Welcome to the virtual VBA Bank Day Scholarship Program! This page is dedicated to resources for students participating in the virtual VBA Bank Day Scholarship Program. Students will have access to this page from March 15-April 2.
Student participation criteria reminders:
- Student must currently be enrolled as a high school senior.
- Student must hold a 3.0 or higher GPA.
- Student must be a resident of Virginia.
- Student must attend a high school in the state of Virginia.
Scholarship Amounts: $29,000 Total will Be Awarded in 2021!
- $1,000 Each for six honorable mention scholarships
- $2,500 Each for six regional winners
- $3,000 Statewide runner-up winner ($5,500 total since all candidates will also be regional winners)
- $5,000 Statewide winner ($7,500 total since all candidates will also be regional winners)
Welcome Message from Scott Harvard, CEO of First Bank, Virginia and VBA Education Foundation Chair
- March 15-April 2: Students have access to the Bank Day resources
- April 2 by 5:00 p.m.: Student essays are due to the VBA. Please see the Essay Information section below for more information about essay submission.
- By the end of April: Honorable Mention and Regional winners will be announced
- By May 7: Statewide Runner-Up and Statewide winners will be announced
2021 Bank Day Essay Topic: What did you learn through your Bank Day experience or from Bank Day resources that will help you manage your financial future AND what did you learn about how banks support their communities?
Please remember that the essays are due to the VBA by April 2, 2021 at 5:00 p.m.
- Essay must be typed in English within ONE Microsoft Word or Google document (please do NOT submit PDF documents).
- Please submit your document with the following file name format: “First Name Last Name”
- Essays must not deviate from the assigned topic. Essay MUST address both parts of the essay topic.
- Do not use any Microsoft or Google templates or pre-formatting in your document.
- Essay must be typed in 12-point Times New Roman font.
- Page set-up must include 1.5 lines spacing with all margins set to 1 inch.
- Include a title page (separate page within the Word/Google document containing your essay, not a separate document) with the following information:
- E-mail address
- Phone number
- School’s name
- Name of virtual host bank
- Date submitted
- Title of essay
- Do not include your name or any personal information on any page other than the title page.
- Essay is limited to two pages (not including the title page or works cited page). Writing beyond this limit will result in disqualification.
- Those who plagiarize will be disqualified. All ideas must be your own. Any references must be cited.
Essay Submission Information
Essays must be submitted to the Virginia Bankers Association by April 2nd at 5 p.m.
- Microsoft Word Documents: submit via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Google Docs: share link or document with email@example.com
You can view a PDF of the essay guidelines here.
Essay Selection Criteria
Student essays are assessed by members of the VBA Emerging Bank Leaders (EBL), the group of more than 500 bankers that connects Virginia’s emerging bank leaders to engage them in the future of the banking industry. The essays are sorted into six regions based on the students’ home addresses and are reviewed by bankers who do not reside in that region (student names are removed from the essays prior to the scoring process). Those bankers select the top two to be named the regional and honorable mention winners. The regional winners’ essays are then sent to the statewide runner-up and winner selection panel, which consists of banking executives from across the Commonwealth.
Essays are scored using the following rubric:
- Content: 40 Points
- Adherence to essay topic
- Logical interpretation of the topic; easy to follow
- Creativity: 40 Points
- Interesting and thoughtful presentation of the topic
- Accuracy: 20 Points
- Grammatically correct
- Proper format, adherence to essay guidelines (please see essay guidelines above for more information on how to structure the essay)
You can view a PDF of the essay selection criteria here.
Through this series of videos, you will learn more about the banking industry, ways to manage your financial future, careers in banking and the ways that banks support the communities they serve.
The State of the Banking Industry: A Look Back and a Glance Forward
Presenter: Bruce Whitehurst, Virginia Bankers Association
In this video, VBA President & CEO Bruce Whitehurst provides an overview of the VBA and the current banking industry landscape, as well as discusses two of the most challenging periods in recent years – the 2008 financial crisis and great recession and the pandemic – and those periods’ effects on banking. This video will enable to you to better understand the banking industry and issues that are at the forefront of bankers’ mind during this unprecedented time.
View Bruce’s presentation on the banking industry here.
Presenter: Jennifer Knighting, Oak View National Bank
In this video, you will learn about the different financial institutions, advantages of being “banked”, basic services provided by financial institutions, and ways to avoid common debt problems.
View Jennifer’s presentation on banking fundamentals here.
View the Banking Fundamentals PowerPoint Here!
Presenter: Jamie Covey, Essex Bank
In this video, you will learn about basic bank function, bank structure, and products and services offered by financial institutions.
View Jamie’s presentation on Banking 101 here.
View the Banking 101 Participant Guide Here! (Microsoft Word)
View the Banking 101 Participant Guide Here! (Google Doc)
Presenter: Lynda Phillips, Old Point National Bank
In this video, you will learn about the information used to make up your credit score, the importance of a good credit rating, and ways to check your credit annually.
View Lynda’s presentation on understanding credit here.
View the Understanding Credit PowerPoint Here!
Careers in Banking Video Series
Presenters: Nathalia Artus, Atlantic Union Bank; Ryan Eisenberg, TowneBank; Jamie Johnson, Farmers Bank; Nicole Martin, Benchmark Community Bank; Amy Mellinger, Powell Valley National Bank; and Marcus Wade, Bank of Botetourt
In this series of videos, you will learn about different careers in banking and what personality traits, skills and courses support each of the job functions at a bank.
- Introduction & Careers in Banking Overview
- Branch Operations
- Human Resources, Marketing & Public Relations
- Information Systems
- Community Outreach
View the Becoming a Banker PowerPoint Here!
community engagement panel
Panelists: Terry Parker, TowneBank; Dale Schuurman, JPMorgan Chase; and Sherry Williams, Chesapeake Bank
In this video, Terry, Dale and Sherry discuss the variety of ways banks across Virginia support the communities they serve. They discuss the industry’s role in financial education, diversity, equity and inclusion, and other partnerships with community organizations. In this video, Terry references the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). To learn more about PPP, see the three-part podcast series linked in the Resources: Listen section on this page.
View their discussion here.
other video resources
- COVID-19: America’s Banks Respond | American Bankers Association
- Find Your Future in Banking | American Bankers Association
- How a FICO Credit Score is Determined | EconLowdown
Students are STRONGLY encouraged to check their virtual host bank’s website and social media platforms for more specific information about ways the bank supports your local community. Consider searching for the bank’s most recent Annual Report or Letter to Shareholders on their website.
- Virginia: Banks’ Economic Impact
- On this site, part of the American Bankers Association’s America’s Banks website, you’ll learn how Virginia’s banks are supporting our state’s economy with consumer, business and other loans, how bankers are safely serving their customers and communities, and how banks are providing more than 45,000 people with a rewarding place to work.
- Infographic: Career Opportunities at America’s Banks
- Pandemic is Bringing Out the Best in Bankers | American Banker
- Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Quick Facts
- Virginia Bankers Association’s Facebook Page
- On our Facebook page, you can see the variety of ways Virginia banks are supporting their communities, with a focus on financial literacy efforts.
- Check out the VBA Newsroom and In the News sections of our website to read about bankers making an impact across the Commonwealth.
- Podcast: Building a Career as a Community Banker | ABA Banking Journal
- Podcast: Celebrating Bankers’ Community Commitment | ABA Banking Journal
- Podcast: Maggie L. Walker’s Historic Mission of Financial Empowerment | ABA Banking Journal
- Podcast: A Look at the Virginia Economy | Speaking of the Economy – Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
- Podcast Series: We Were Economic First Responders | ABA Banking Journal
Hear banker stories behind the Paycheck Protection Program in a three-part podcast series
Understanding Student Loans: Resources from VBA Associate Member College Ave
Through these videos and blog posts provided by VBA Associate Member College Ave, you’ll learn more about the student loan process and tips for paying for college.
Videos and Blog Posts:
- How to Pay for College: 6 Ways to Cover Your Costs
- 10 Financial Strategies to Cover Your College Costs
- Student Loans 101: How Student Loans Work
- How To Apply For The FAFSA
- What is the Cost of Attendance?
- When Should You Take Out a Private Student Loan?
- How to Read Your Financial Aid Award Letter
Other Resources from College Ave:
- College Ave College Planning Timeline for Students and Parents Getting Ready for College
- College Ave Credit 101: What is it and Why is it Important?
- College Ave College Budget Planner
- College Ave Student Budget Worksheet
college ave $1,000 scholarship monthly sweepstakes
As an additional scholarship opportunity, you can enter to win a $1,000 College Ave Student Loans scholarship. They’ll choose one lucky winner each month, so be sure to check back each month to enter! Learn more and enter here.
Thank You to Our Bank Day Virtual Hosts & Sponsors!
Thank you to the following 2021 virtual host banks!
Thank you to the following bank sponsors that contributed to the 2020 VBA Education Foundation Annual Fund Campaign. These contributions directly support the scholarships awarded through this program!