A portable, kid-size town with real shops visited Pueblo, Colorado this Spring semester to deliver a hands-on lesson in financial education to local fifth graders. Through Young AmeriTowne On the Road, a program by Young Americans Center for Financial Education, students learned the basics of personal finance, economics, business, government, ethics, and philanthropy.
Although this program has existed in Colorado since 1990, this year brought much-needed upgrades thanks to a new, Salesforce-based registration system and CalendarAnything — the #1 calendar app for Salesforce.
Bringing financial education to Colorado schools
Until 2014, Young AmeriTowne existed only in two permanent facilities in the Denver metro area. Schools geographically distant from Denver seldom participated. Then, Young Americans Center launched two, portable versions of the program that could travel around the state. Over the next five years, AmeriTowne experienced record growth: 33,602 students in the 2018-2019 school year compared to 24,160 students in 2013-2014.
While the program grew exponentially, a clear problem emerged. A site-based registration database, only accessible in Denver, could no longer support the needs of a traveling AmeriTowne program that could find itself seven hours from the home office.
Scheduling challenges cause concern
Staff evaluated several options, and decided that using Salesforce to track program registration would be a near-perfect solution. There was one exception: a reliable registration system required a robust calendar solution, and the native Salesforce calendar object was quickly becoming outdated.
The team needed a calendar they could color-code by location; they could customize for different users; and they could use it to easily edit field information.
CalendarAnything to the rescue
Fortunately, Young Americans Center staff discovered Silverline’s CalendarAnything, available on the Salesforce AppExchange, which effortlessly solved these problems. CalendarAnything provides a visually-pleasing, easy-to-customize calendar, which allows team members to track registration in real time, whether they are checking the system in Denver or in any of six locations the program visits throughout the year.
For a program reaching 50% of Colorado fifth graders, CalendarAnything has been an incredible improvement. Staff can spend less time maintaining a spreadsheet and more time providing a life-long lesson for students like 11-year-old Genesis, a fifth-grader at Desert Sage Elementary School in Pueblo West, Colorado. “In Young AmeriTowne, I’ve learned so much about supply and demand,” she said. She also commented on the day she presided over AmeriTowne as Mayor. “I also learned about how to give your time, talent, and treasure.”