Fifth Third Bank’s Young Bankers Club – VMG STUDIOS

Fifth Third Bank’s Young Bankers Club

Financial Literacy Game for Students

2024 AVA Digital Awards Gold Winner

Interactive Media

Project Background

VMG Studios was selected by Fifth Third Bank to reimagine the Young Bankers Club program and take it from a text-based print booklet to a full-fledged interactive experience and digital learning program.

VMG was tasked with developing the updated curriculum (based on Common Core and Jump$tart national education standards), fresh creative content, interactive development, and deployment of the program.

VMG, hired educational experts and conducted focus groups with 5th grade students, teachers, and education-based community programs. After identifying the educational needs and pedagogy for the program, VMG generated the creative concept that would deliver the educational content.

The final creative featured a scavenger hunt led by the 11-year-old hero character, Maximillion Money™, the President of Young Bankers Club®, and the richest kid in America. Max quests the students to find all his hidden money by uncovering and solving clues in his grand scavenger hunt across the United States. The journey takes them to the US Treasury, the New York Stock Exchange, a U.S. Mint, and other financial landmarks. Along the way, Max test’s their mettle as financial geniuses with interactive exercises, choice-based scenarios, and decisions that have consequences. Students discover hidden clues, win badges, unlock avatars, level up to new adventures, take weekly trivia to test their knowledge, and challenge themselves to be first on the class leaderboard.

After ideating the overall course concept, VMG crafted multiple design options for the central character of Max, the player avatars, locations, all artwork, and interactive content. Options were run past Fifth Third Bank and focus groups to identify the best selections for maximum impact.

Next, VMG designed and animated all scenes and interactions that the students could encounter while taking the course, including branching options and variable outcomes based on the student’s selections. As one example, there are four possible epilogue scenes available depending on the student’s choices.  We also created multiple remediation steps for each question to assist students when they answer a question incorrectly.  Students and teachers also have the option to download worksheets that correspond with each lesson for use offline or in tandem to enable multiple learning styles. Multiple custom JavaScript widgets and tools were developed to ensure that students would have all the tools they needed available to them within the developed SCORM package, ensuring that the entire experience was immersive and seamless.

Concurrently with the design and development of the course, VMG worked with the Tovuti Learning Management System (LMS/LXP) to develop the platform experience and look (UX/UI). VMG subsequently branded and customized the platform and developed enrollment and reporting strategies and pages. VMG also developed all the documentation (Instructor Guide, Admin Guide) and created an in-person learning experience to supplement the digital program. In this experience (the Banker Engagement Day), a guest volunteer banker visits the class, hosts a mini-career day, and leads the class in a trivia game based on the lessons learned from the digital course.

To make the course available to more students, VMG, in partnership with Multilingual Connections, localized the course into Spanish, which included recasting the voiceover talent for Spanish and reanimating and updating the designs to account for Spanish text and duration. The Tovuti platform content was also localized. To increase accessibility, the course is fully captioned and features keyboard accessibility tools.

From concept to design, lesson plans to interactive development, and platform management to technical documentation, VMG surpassed all expectations during the course of the project and has continued to wow everyone who participates in the program. Max’s Scavenger Hunt is an immersive experience that feels like a video game but functions like an e-learning program. It provides all the engagement of a custom app or game while allowing for the detailed tracking and reporting metrics that educators and program managers love.

E-learning developers from around the United States have commended the program for its expansive vision and revolutionary approach. In the words of project lead, Shawna Mascarelli, “We set out to challenge the prevailing assumptions of e-Learning limitations. And this program delivers on that goal.”