Newswise — “Absolutely! That is, if you teach them before they hit the teen years and already have bad spending habits,” says Jan Brakefield of the department to consumer sciences at The University of Alabama. That’s Brakefield’s goal with Camp Cash. For two weeks, Brakefield helps middle-school students develop essential money management skills, experience college life, and enhance confidence, self-esteem, and leadership skills. Topics include financial goal setting, budgeting, credit use, investing, insurance, wealth accumulation, and career planning. Brakefield and her group have toured a bank learning everything from opening an account to witnessing the opening a massive safe door. Mondays through Fridays, however, she teaches the skills that many Americans now wish they had learned when they younger—and more likely to remember. “We are trying to reach just the right age group to make the biggest impact,” said Brakefield, “At their ages, they are excited about new responsibility and are ready to soak up this kind of information rather than filter it out. Big changes like driving and part-time jobs are around the corner, and now is a good time to prepare them.”