Tag Archives: Benefits




Can’t reach your financial goals? Having a hard time with your credit report and credit score? Come along with us to gain the knowledge you need for better finances. We can help you create a realistic spending plan to achieve your financial goals; moreover, you’ll have an understanding of your credit reports and credit score. Because finances affect your whole life, we make sure that you leave with support and confidence when it comes to spending, borrowing, and saving.

READ: Less Stress & More Moneyquote

Assessing your lifestyle and how it aligns with your budget can help you maintain financial control. Here’s how one member assessed her finances with her coach, and improved her situation.  read more

kidREAD: Back to Basics

If you want to get ahead financially, you have to get back to the basics. That’s why it’s worth your time to review the fundamentals and to assess whether or not you’re using them correctly. read mbikeore

WEBINAR: Financial Peace of Mind

On March 24th, come hear about your opportunity to work with a Money Coach to overcome financial stress and achieve your financial dreams.

w-moneyREWARDS: Take Action and Win!

You get the chance to win cool prizes, when you engage in the MSA program, work with a Money Coach, and attend webinars.
learn more



From MSA- The Keys to Less Stress and a Happy Life

Karly-635x357Want the keys to less stress and a happy life?  Karly found the answer when she started working with a MSA Money Coach, an experience that has enriched her finances and her life.  The best part?  The keys are within your reach as well.

Karly had $58,000 in debt keeping her from a care-free life.  Any money left over each month got swallowed up by bills and unexpected expenses.  To make matters worse, Karly and her husband just had a baby, bought a new house on the West Coast, and realized they were fifteen years away from retirement with absolutely no savings.

Needless to say, they were desperate to turn things around.

When Karly entered the MSA Financial Wellness program (offered through her employer, a university of California), she started working with a Money Coach, Rachelle, who gave her hope for a better life.  “I came to MSA with a lot of debt.  My Money Coach helped me put together a doable plan to tackle the debt [and] has been very instrumental in getting me on a livable spending plan….  For the first time in a while, I see a light at the end of the tunnel.  I am so grateful for her guidance!!!”

In a nutshell, Rachelle’s answer to Karly’s problems was a budget and an accountability partner.

With Rachelle’s help, Karly hit the ground running:  “Rachelle is always so encouraging and a cheerleader for my financial accomplishments.  She can be firm when necessary but, again, in a way that empowers you and makes you feel like you can accomplish the task!!!”

So what did Karly accomplish exactly?  And how did they use a budget to create a stress-free, happy life?

Rachelle and Karly took an in-depth look at the family finances: income, expenses, debts, savings, and goals.  From there, they made an action plan and started to see the fabulous results.

  • They calculated that Karly could put $1,700 towards debt each month.  Originally, Karly was set to pay off debt in eight years, but now she can wipe out the debt in less than half that time, and the new plan has already allowed her to reduce her overall debt by $12,000!
  • Karly didn’t have any kind of savings, so Rachelle helped her allocate money each month just for that purpose.  Now she has close to $6,000 in emergency savings and $2,000 saved for irregular expenses.
  • Rachelle connected Karly with another Money Coach who is a retirement specialist.  They talked about additional contributions to retirement accounts and were able to meet Karly’s goal of $6,000/month in retirement income.

As Karly put it, “Rachelle is wonderful!!!”  She works in the real world, acknowledging that things happen, and we should enjoy life as well as plan for future enjoyment.  She has helped me to really take a look at all the extra expenses that pop up throughout the year and put these in my budget.  She’s also helped me to be honest about my spending habits, but did so in such a gently way, focusing on the positive of this knowledge.  I truly feel prepared for any emergency.  She coaches me and keeps my mind at ease through the bumps.  She is constantly reviewing my spending and offering ways to curb expenses.”

Even when Karly didn’t realize how much she was spending on discretionary items and got overloaded with surprise expenses, her Money Coach was there to get her back on track.

Rachelle explained that spending changes from month to month, so reviews are necessary for peace of mind, and, who knows, you may get a pleasant surprise.  Karly sure did.  When Rachelle helped Karly reassess her spending, they found that Karly had $600 left over every month (That’s $7,200 a year!), to which Rachelle suggested putting a portion towards savings and a portion towards debt.

All in all, Karly found the direction and relief she was looking for:  “[My Money Coach] has changed my view of a budget.  It’s not a painful drudgery, but a key to less stress and a happy life.  She often reminds me that I should not dread my budget, and if I do, we should tweak some things.”

The accountability and accomplishments Karly gained, through the MSA Financial Wellness program, were too great to let go, so Karly has continued reaping the benefits well beyond her employer-funded period.  In fact, she’s been working with her coach for several years.  She has also taken advantage of other parts of the program, like meeting with a tax specialist and signing up for ID Monitoring (MSA’s identity theft protection services).

Karly achieved financial peace of mind, and you can too!  Talk to a Money Coach today for the keys to less stress and a happy life.  Call 888-724-2326 today.

Register by Feb 16! Workshop Offering: Human Relations Skills – The Dale Carnegie Course

Workshop Offering: Human Relations Skills – The Dale Carnegie Course

“Investing in yourself is the best investment you can make. I invested in the Dale Carnegie® program years ago and it was worth a college degree.”  – Warren Buffet

Please read the entire communication below if you are interested:

Dates: Tuesdays, February 23- April 12*, 2016 from 8:30 AM to Noon (8 sessions)

Location: Kirk Alumni, main room

Facilitator: Agnes Cook

*Graduation lunch on April 12 from 12:00-12:30

Click here for more information and to register: Dale Carnegie Course Registration *

Register by February 16th to reserve a seat

You will be able to:

  • Create a Professional Vision
  • Set and Achieve Your Goals
  • Present Your Ideas with Clarity
  • Enhance Your Leadership Skills
  • Coach and Motivate for Success
  • Stay Positive in Critical Situations
  • Build Trust and Integrity with Others
  • Build Relationships across the Organization

This course qualifies for the Middlebury Continuing Education Benefit*:

If you would like to receive funding to attend:

  1. Please first click here to get more information about the program from Dale Carnegie or register or contact Agnes Cook at agnes_cook@dalecarnegie.com
  2. Then click here to complete and submit a Middlebury Continuing Education Fund Application. If question arise about this step of the process, please contact Petrina teRiele in Human Resources at pteriele@middlebury.edu
  3. Please also discuss with this your supervisor to get the appropriate approval to attend (if questions arise regarding this please contact Laura Carotenuto in Human Resources at lcaroten@middlebury.edu)

*This Dale Carnegie course is accredited and offers 2.8 CEU’s (Continuing Education Units) and is supported by the Continuing Education Fund Benefit. Participants are required to participate in at least 7 out of the 8 classes to receive CEU credits. If you miss classes, make up classes for all sessions are available in the Dale Carnegie Essex, VT location.

My Secure Advantage Update/Webinar

Human Resources is pleased to report that the new “My Secure Advantage” (MSA) financial wellness program which is offered in partnership with E4 (our Employee and Family Assistance Program) got off to a remarkably successful first month: between January 4th and the 31st 46 benefits-eligible Middlebury employees enrolled themselves in the program! And the initial feedback we have received from those using the Money Coaching program has been overwhelmingly positive!  According to MSA, the top three areas of interest for Middlebury participants have been: debt reduction, retirement planning and budgeting.  Might you be interested in those or other money-related topics, too?    Whether you are suffering from financial stress or have some extra cash and are in a position to do some financial planning consider joining your “early adopter” colleagues and  taking advantage of what MSA can offer.  Please consider consulting with a Money Coach (888-724-2326) or joining MSA for a live financial webinar later this month (see signup information below).

Many members have asked that we continue our Financial Forum Series. We are happy to announce that we have scheduled a Financial Forum for each quarter of 2016. As usual, our panelists will address questions ranging from debt and budgeting, to investments and retirement. Since we are in the middle of tax season, we will also have a member of our tax team available to answer your tax-related questions. Submit a question when you register, then log into the webinar on February 24th to hear our panel address questions and concerns from people across the country.


MEET: Dave Jiru
35+ years’ experience in the financial services industry – Dave is a former Registered Rep. with the NASD and had Series 24, 7, 63 and 65 securities licenses. Dave manages the MSA Financial Ed. Dept. and is a frequent presenter of classes and seminars nationwide

MEET: Barbara Quan
Barbara has worked in financial services since 2001 as a loan officer for several mortgage firms, and she holds a California Real Estate License. She is a Certified Credit Counselor. She is bilingual in English and Spanish.

MEET: Donna Shackel
38+ years’ experience in tax and financial services – Donna is an EA and former IRS tax representative. She spent 10 years teaching tax law for both the IRS and California Tax Education Council. She is also a Certified Credit Counselor.