Amarillo-based FirstBank Southwest has created a 15-member Banking Advisory Council (BAC) to help understand the future of banking through the eyes of students. The council is made up of high school seniors at Amarillo ISD, Canyon ISD and Bushland ISD, as well as freshmen and sophomore students at Amarillo College. Members were chosen during a competitive process that included meeting education requirements, essays and in-person interviews.
“It’s an idea I dreamed up a few years back that has finally come to fruition,” says Andy Marshall, president and CEO. “We want to expose these folks to banking and hopefully create a new generation of bankers from people who might not have otherwise thought of banking as a career choice. We will do everything we can to learn from them…what their generation wants in a financial services relationship and, in doing so, prepare us to evolve into the community bank of the future.”
Members of the BAC will interact with the bank’s leadership, have networking opportunities, be involved in community service and develop professionally. This program is designed to enrich the lives of the students by growing the skills that will make them attractive to future employers and to promote banking as a career.
“This presents a remarkable opportunity for our team to gather insights from students and reciprocate by imparting leadership skills,” says Kelly Preston, BAC program director and senior vice president/human resources director.
The BAC meets once a month from September through May. Each student is required to meet responsibilities while on the council, and in turn, each will receive a $3,000 scholarship to the school of their choice.
Established in 1907, FirstBank Southwest serves the Texas Panhandle, Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex and Austin and San Antonio metro markets.