w!se’s innovative and exciting programs empower students with the essential skills and experiences they need to participate fully in our increasingly complex global economy. 

w!se has the expertise and experience to succeed; a long-standing reputation for quality programs, materials and professional services, and strong relationships with schools, teachers, and the private sector.  Central to our success is meaningful evaluation of our programs and their results.

Click the links below for more information about our three main program areas.

Financial Literacy and Education

Preparation for College and the Global Marketplace

Social Entrepreneurship



Financial Education AND Financial Literacy











Financial Literacy Certification Program: Most students drop out of college not because of academic failure but because of personal debt and the fastest growing group filing personal bankruptcy is young people ages 18 to 25. w!se’s Financial Literacy Certification Program (FLCP) addresses the urgent need for financial literacy and education. The program provides high school students with access to financial education and the opportunity to become certified financially literate. Participating schools teach personal finance and administer w!se’s standardized Financial Literacy Certification (CFL) Test. Teachers have access to training, educational resources, pre-tests, and online practice tests. Students who pass the CFL Test are Certified Financially Literate, earning their CFL. Developed in 2003, the program has expanded nationally and has been widely recognized for its success, including the US Treasury Department’s John Sherman Award for Excellence in Financial Education.

If you have questions or would like to sign up, contact us at info (at) wise-ny (dot) org or (212) 421-2700.

WISE and the CFL CERTIFIED FINANCIALLY LITERATE program are not affiliated with CFA Institute.

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Outstanding teachers and schools participating in the FLCP are recognized each year.Pictured above are Blue Star School banner recipients at our annual MoneyPOWER Conference.

Certification in Personal Finance for Teachers

Do you yearn to be a personal finance instructor but don’t have the knowledge or a credential? w!se can help. In 2008, we created a Certification Test for personal finance instructors. Instructors who pass the Test earn a Certification in Personal Finance, a bona fide credential that demonstrates proficiency to teach personal finance.

Instructors may prepare for the Test by enrolling in a course or workshop, or prepare on their own. w!se provides a detailed manual to facilitate study. For instructors who are high school teachers, testing is also available at major conferences throughout the year and/or can be arranged through the school district. All testing is administered online via the same secure and user-friendly online testing platform as our student test. Results are available immediately.

Any qualified professional interested in teaching personal finance can take the test; it is especially targeted to support high school teachers. The test assesses knowledge of personal finance topics that are aligned with state and national standards. It builds teachers’ capacity and allows them to earn the first financial literacy certification of its kind.

The Certification in Personal Finance was first launched at the University of Central Arkansas, and teachers in 35 states have since taken the Test.

w!se partners with Teachers College and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York for the annual Teachers College Cowin Financial Literacy Summer Institute, a series of collaborative and interactive workshops for teachers on personal finance with explicit ties to standards and curricula.

Learn more about the Teachers College Cowin Financial Literacy Summer Institute and apply to the Summer Institute today!



New York Financial Literacy Coalition
Financially literate young adults are able to make smart decisions and responsible plans for achieving their financial goals, whether that means financing a college education, starting their own business, buying a computer, or saving for retirement. 

The New York Financial Literacy Coalition works with financial service firms, non-profit organizations, teachers, school administrators, and parents to promote financial literacy among young adults.




High School of Economics & Finance (HSEAF), New York City Department of Education:  Founded in 1993 by w!se President Phyllis Frankfort, this Title I school, located in the heart of Wall Street, provides a diverse student body from all five boroughs of New York City with a demanding college and career preparatory program. The school’s mission is to provide a rigorous academic program in economics and finance that includes real-world opportunities; to graduate students with the skills and knowledge necessary for college and the workplace; and to implement innovative approaches in education, which will prepare students to succeed in a technological society and in the global economy. As a model for educational reform, the school is one of 200 high schools exempted from the new citywide curriculum.  Ninety-seven percent of the class of 2008 graduated with acceptances to college. Recent graduates have been accepted at Barnard, Brown, NYU, Cornell, Johns Hopkins, Syracuse, Wellesley, Wesleyan and the University of Pennsylvania, among other top schools around the country.  HSEAF is not a screened school.


Please visit  www.hseaf.net to learn more about the school.

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Preparation for College and the Global Marketplace





The W!SE Institute for Lifelong Learning: The W!SE Institute at the High School of Economics & Finance is a unique partnership program that expands a student’s school schedule to include hundreds of hours of seminars provided by industry professionals and on-the-job work experiences to build career skills.  Students may complete three work experiences before graduation – community service work, an unpaid internship at a corporation, and a paid corporate internship through the Academy of Finance – to earn a W!SE Institute diploma. The Institute prepares students for their work experiences through skills development seminars, and places and supervises them during their work experiences.  Students have the opportunity to apply classroom learning to real-world workplace challenges, to explore career possibilities, and to acquire practical skills needed for transitioning to the workplace and to college.  Students graduate more confident and prepared than their peers. Surveys indicate that the most valuable aspect of the Weill Institute is inspiring students to work harder and continue their education. 

For more information contact Sheila Beatty at sbeatty (at) wise-ny (dot) org or (212) 421-2700.

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Global Business Challenge: Students from virtual enterprises in the United States and practice firms worldwide are invited to participate in the Global Business Challenge to analyze a company and make recommendations to address its business issues. Teams present their evaluation and business strategies. The Challenge is an exciting opportunity for students to apply their expertise and work on a team of young people from different cultures.  Students engage in the art of negotiation and build team skills while developing and honing their business acumen.

w!se designed, implements, and evaluates this unique program for domestic and international students. 


SOCIAL Entrepreneurship


The Quality of Life INNOVATIONS Program & Competition
: The Quality of Life INNOVATIONS program (QLI), a Model for Applied Learning, invites high schools from New York City to introduce a project-based learning tool into their courses and after-school programs.  This program closes the achievement gap, increases the number of high school graduates who are academically prepared for college, and inculcates a sense of social responsibility in students as informed and engaged participants in work, community and civic life. The QLI students have the opportunity to learn in meaningful and fun ways how they can make a difference in their communities by researching, then creating, feasible solutions to real-world problems. Participating students identify a quality of life issue in their community, learn to conduct surveys, observations and questionnaires, conduct original background and field research, write a proposal with their feasible recommendations for improving the quality of life issue and submit their proposals to the QLI Competition. Students representing the winning three proposals receive scholarship awards.


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