Does the traditional school curriculum really equip students for the practicalities of life? Yes, we all need math skills, to be able to read and write fluently and understand scientific principles to better make sense of the world around us. But what about finance? What provision is there to ensure young people know how to protect, grow and secure their money as they earn? Financial illiteracy is a real threat to all our livelihoods, say Zachary Trebbi and Joshua Kiley – and their mission is to change things.
Trebbi and Kiley are the visionary entrepreneurs behind CEOWatchlist, an online coaching program bringing tailored investment education to the public. What started for the duo as a series of TikTok videos sharing their insights into investments based on the stock buying behavior of prominent company CEOs quickly became a viral sensation. Now, the pair are leveraging their knowledge and newfound internet fame to create individualized education programs helping everyday people invest more wisely.
“Our approach is just like the old saying. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for life.” says Zachary Trebbi, “That’s our goal.” He continues, “We want our students to become independent and knowledgeable in order to handle their own finances and investments.” Trebbi and Kiley’s solution is a subscription e-learning platform that offers tailored investment education with one-to-one support and ongoing mentorship.
Quality, reliable financial tuition – particularly regarding the stock market – is something that Trebbi and Kiley find challenging to pin down. “We noticed there was a demand for proper education”, they say, “Particularly since the majority of advice available on social media seems to either be misconstrued or simply false.” The problem, they believe, stems from a lack of financial literacy programs in schools. Zachary Trebbi says, “I loved school, but as I got older I saw how the school system seemed to be outdated. Many important subject areas are brushed over, and one of those is financial literacy”.
For Trebbi and Kiley, a lack of financial literacy can be a real threat to future livelihoods. They say, “No matter the socioeconomic background of a person, everyone should have the opportunity to learn about finance and investing through a proper education.” With the success of their current program – so much so, one of their biggest challenges is fighting sites trying to reach their students with fraudulent “get rich quick schemes” – they now have a goal to bring their education initiatives into schools in lower-income neighborhoods.
Zachary Trebbi says, “One of our goals is to create a charitable organization that teaches kids from disadvantaged backgrounds from a young age how to save and invest in their future.” Trebbi and Kiley are determined to fill the financial knowledge gap with quality, accessible and reliable education. After all, as Trebbi says, “Knowledge is one of the most valuable assets in the world.”