Pelican State CU Opens Student Branch At Peabody Magnet

Pelican State CU Opens Student Branch At Peabody Magnet

ALEXANDRIA – Peabody Magnet High School students are gaining real workforce experience through their partnership with Pelican State Credit Union.

For the third year in a row, Pelican has partnered with Peabody to host a fully functioning on-campus branch operated for students, by students in Mrs. Sandra Eldridge's "Work Keys" course and Mrs. Mary Williamson's "Cooperative Office Education" course.

The new school year was kicked off with a grand opening event and ribbon cutting. Students and faculty enjoyed games, contests and refreshments. 13 New students became members of Pelican during the event bringing the total number of student members at Peabody to 78.

The ceremonial ribbon cutting was performed by Tiara Davis, a senior at Peabody who was surrounded by her classmates and supporting faculty including Principal Lee Dotson.

The branch will be open during second period on every Wednesday that school is in session. The student workers will be supervised by Pelican's Alexandria & Pineville Branch Managers Vonda McCobbie and Christy Pentz.

"We are very happy to work with Peabody again. Our focus this year will be to entice more students to utilize the school branch through contests, promotions and referral programs," said Pelican CEO Jeffrey K. Conrad. "The more students that use the branch, the more resources we can bring in to support the students and the school," Conrad said.

In addition to routine transactions, students will be taught other teller responsibilities such as processing Visa Card payments for real Pelican Members.

"The students will be completing transactions, processing payments, opening new memberships and learning other teller job duties that will provide a great foundation for anyone interested in working in a financial institution in the future," said McCobbie.

The "Work Keys" course at Peabody consists of 17 students who will receive a "Job-Ready Certification" by the end of the school year. The certification gives the students an edge in the job market and serves the local business community by providing a special pool of pre-qualified applicants.

"We see more and more job postings in this area that require this certification," said Eldridge, "We're giving these students a head start for entering the job market after graduation."

In addition to the hands on financial skills Peabody students will learn while operating the school branch, they will also complete a course in financial literacy taught by Pelican's Nationally Certified Credit Counselor Rhoda Hundley. She will be working with four classrooms throughout the year to teach students about credit scores, how to balance a checkbook and other money management skills.

Ms. Hundley also teaches these financial education courses at Tioga and Pineville High School.

All Rapides Parish Residents are eligible for membership with Pelican State Credit Union. Credit Counseling Services are free to all Pelican members. For more information, please visit