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Teenagers who get work this summer in Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl’s Summer Youth Employment Program will be eligible to obtain free checking accounts at Evanston’s First Bank & Trust.

The bank will also provide financial literacy classes for about 150 Evanston youth.

Under the program, youths will enjoy free direct deposit of their wages into their accounts, as well as ATM access and no minimum balance requirement, according to former Evanston Mayor Jay Lytle, who is a managing director of the bank.

“By providing these accounts,” said Lytle, “we will not only be encouraging young people to start saving at an early age, but we will also be helping Evanston businesses develop reliable, stable employees.”

The Mayor’s Summer Youth Employment Program provides participating teens ages 14 to 18 up to nine weeks of entry-level work experience in a variety of jobs at community-based organizations, the City of Evanston, and in the private sector.

Last year, 525 teens received summer jobs through the program, and of those, 150 were under the age of 18.

As an incentive for signing up for the bank accounts, each teen will also be entered into a raffle to win one of 10 $25 Downtown Evanston gift cards.

The financial literacy classes to be provided by the bank will cover the basics of banking and budgeting and will also teach teens about careers in banking.

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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