D. Alexis Samuels joins us to discuss Financial Literacy for a Digital World with FinLitx.
Samuels grew up in the projects of New York in a single-parent home. As every child in that situation dreams, he had big plans to get himself and his family out of that situation and into a better life. Needless to say, he succeeded and now aims to bring all underserved community members along with him.
Samuels was offered the opportunity to join a Wall Street firm upon graduating college. It was here that he discovered a key point that influenced his current project: People want more than financial literacy; they want engagement. This pivotal realization motivated Samuels to create the first-ever gaming-learning app, a blend of technology and reward-based (somewhat addictive) enjoyment.
“If you walk into an auditorium full of high school students today and ask how many of them own or carry a checkbook, barely two might raise their hands,” said Samuels. “In fact, we’ve tested and proven this. Conversely, if you ask those same students how many of them have heard of or own cryptocurrency, the percentage will be much higher — if you are at the right school.
“The disparate knowledge between schools with higher funding versus less is a markedly different outcome when it comes to financial literacy. That is what we are fighting against with this program. We want schools, and even curious adults, to have the tools necessary to keep their finances happy, healthy, and controlled.”
– D. Alexis Samuels
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The following transcript was created using artificial intelligence. There will be some grammatical errors below.
00:01:17:25 – 00:01:48:23
Richard Carthon: What’s up, everyone? Your host here, Richard Carthon, here to help you stay. Cryptocurrent, all things web3. And today I have a really special guest that is all the way out in New York and splits times out in Miami, but is working on a project that I have a lot of resignation with, being near and dear to my heart, with the importance of education, especially as relates to financial literacy and especially as it relates to giving that to our youth. Today we have a de Alexis Samuels that is with fine lit x.
00:01:49:00 – 00:01:49:29
Alexis Samuels: How are you doing today?
00:01:50:18 – 00:01:57:10
Alexis Samuels: I am doing wonderful, Richard. Thanks so much for having me on your show. I’m so excited and raring to tell our story.
00:01:58:14 – 00:02:05:12
Richard Carthon: Absolutely. Well, excited to hear the story. But first, we want to learn a little bit more about you. You give us a little bit of background on yourself.
00:02:06:19 – 00:02:23:09
Alexis Samuels: Well, my background really is what inspired our vision to educate people in the area of financial literacy. I came out of a project complex in Brooklyn, New York,
00:02:24:24 – 00:02:49:03
Alexis Samuels: and I was surrounded boundaries, but I believe that I could achieve more. The result was I was inside of a program and in a in a high school that afforded me the opportunity to finish at the age of 14 in the half. The next week I was working and being able.
00:02:50:18 – 00:03:24:02
Alexis Samuels: Learn international trade, importing and exporting. About three years later, I started my own company doing the same thing with the agents that I buy in Spain and Portugal, in Italy and in the Far East. And it’s been over 30 years now. Since then, they haven’t looked back. But that journey while studying there enabled me to learn much more about banking, about site drafting of credits. And this was just I to the east, the economic community being formed.
00:03:24:12 – 00:03:30:23
Alexis Samuels: So prior to that, you know, if you wanted to do business importing and exporting with countries or seas,
00:03:32:11 – 00:03:58:15
Alexis Samuels: then you had to clear customs. You had to understand duty and understand currency adjustment factors. These are all the things I learned within those first few years as a young man when I mean obviously the travel the world, but also the other week I’m on a plane out of JFK, New York, to Barcelona, Spain, in my early twenties. And and just living it, loving it, learning it. But then.
00:04:00:03 – 00:04:40:12
Alexis Samuels: Not long after I had the radio show, a period where I was taking calling from people and answering their questions about economics, about finance. And it wasn’t long thereafter that we found ourselves facing the foreclosure crisis. And the majority of the calls, the common thread through all of them was if they were falling behind in their mortgage payments, if they were having a check on just paying their credit card bills, it was a fear, a fearful experience for them because they didn’t want to answer the phone, you know, whenever Bill collect the call.
00:04:40:27 – 00:05:11:19
Alexis Samuels: So I decided I needed to figure out how to take what I had learned throughout what was well over four decades at that point and put it into a gamified system. If you look over my shoulder, there’s a learning system that was that I invented called RTP or Get on the Road to Prosperity. What it does is it. It just financially there’s just by playing the game.
00:05:12:05 – 00:05:27:05
Alexis Samuels: In my mind they were saying, why are they playing only with the only thing you learn is how to collect rent and hope somebody’s going to lend more property. What about credit scores? What about banking? What about
00:05:29:03 – 00:05:48:18
Alexis Samuels: things like mortgages? What are your legal rights? And I should mention I’m also a 22 year old girl, so we were able to actually incorporate the law or it’s reality. Those who play, it’s currently available in about 25 states inside school systems across the country.
00:05:51:29 – 00:06:22:22
Alexis Samuels: Everyone agrees it’s priceless. If I only had this when I was a youth, I would spend myself of so many different mistakes. And so we began to distribute within school systems across the country and right here in the New York City area. We saw amazing results in that the homeless shelter was here in the New York area that go to the Department of Education headquarters after school.
00:06:22:29 – 00:06:59:23
Alexis Samuels: And they play our learning system. And to see the transformation because it digs deep down into the heart, the emotions. One of our board of directors, Dr. Jeff Gardere, he’s a clinical psychologist. After he played it with family, he said, well, Alexis, this is the first time I was able to get to the 15 year old. And I’m a psychologist. He’s on CNN and Fox TV and other media recognized as America’s psychologist is.
00:06:59:25 – 00:07:34:02
Alexis Samuels: But even he was having difficulty getting through to his 15 year old. But this learning system was designed in a gamified way in order to bring out emotion. In fact, our studies show that when you play it, you release dopamine. Because they literally impact your emotions. And it can take a bad tendency and replace it with a good one. So we actually remade the brain in taking those ones who might have developed financial habits.
00:07:35:00 – 00:08:10:08
Alexis Samuels: And actually rewarding them with learning how to do it the right way. And then they will continue to make the right decisions when they’re confronting it. So that’s that’s my background. It’s a passion to me. So I’ve committed myself to it. Our plan had grown to become a global vision. Because we have relationships in Africa and Caribbean, in South America that are also looking for the services that we’re providing through our loan system.
00:08:10:20 – 00:08:14:18
Alexis Samuels: And and what’s coming, which is where are we going to find that.
00:08:16:02 – 00:08:50:03
Richard Carthon: Which is exciting. And again, you have quite a robust story just in general. Right. And being able to go into a program programming at age 14 in your first job, work in Wall Street, learning all of that and having that access to just information, gamifying it, turning it into roads, prosperity, sharing that with the world. And like you said, you’re an across 25 states and probably have impacted the lives of countless children. But now you’re trying to expand that vision and this access to even more. And so that’s where we fast forward to today, where we have finally.
00:08:50:10 – 00:08:58:29
Richard Carthon: So tell us, what is it? And how’s this being implemented on, you know, within the crypto blockchain landscape?
00:08:59:12 – 00:09:14:11
Alexis Samuels: Yeah. Wonderful. Well, finally, there is a brand that stands for financial literacy with the fact it’s financial risk for a digital world.
00:09:16:05 – 00:09:25:23
Alexis Samuels: We don’t believe it makes sense to teach children the analog way of doing business or managing your your resource, your funds.
00:09:27:15 – 00:09:45:13
Alexis Samuels: We the survey years ago in one of our schools clients and we asked, how do you have a checking account? You know, how many of you you know, students and these students range from ages 14 to roughly 16 years of zero. None of them had any checking. Well, how many of you have a credit or debit?
00:09:47:14 – 00:10:17:29
Alexis Samuels: All the hands went up. Well, that is the beginning of the transition to digital currency. The other side of it that quite frankly disturbs us is that a centralized banking system. They are banks that is taking wealth from the from our families and the earliest ones starting at 13, 14, 15 years old.
00:10:18:10 – 00:10:30:24
Alexis Samuels: You know, when you get about 16, 17, 18, you get these applications in the mail from the credit card company backed by the banks, and they’re trying to get you to sign up and where
00:10:32:09 – 00:11:10:04
Alexis Samuels: you can get your credit score started this way. We’ll give you a $200, you know, credit line. It’s only a $75 annual fee, which we’ll take right off the top. So you start out in debt and no education as to how to manage those funds. Financial values. That’s just one example of why learning financial literacy from the early stages is really important. And I just the one statistic I’ll tell you. 85% of those who learned financial literacy learned them from their parents.
00:11:11:28 – 00:11:40:18
Alexis Samuels: Since up until now, schools haven’t really been mandated to offer a financial literacy course. But when it’s the parents of financially literate. Well, the truth of the matter is, what you can do is watch their parents habits. And from our experience, the majority of these are not financially literate. So it just continues to perpetuate a downward spiral whereby there’s a major transfer of wealth from our families.
00:11:42:05 – 00:12:20:09
Alexis Samuels: You know, two of the bank institutions which are centralized. So that’s one of the reasons why we became inspired to set up a financial literacy ecosystem. We have the tools already. We’ve already developed them a long time ago, the financial literacy curriculum that we deliver through our gamified systems to school systems. But then when COVID hit back in early 2020, those superintendents and principals began calling me and saying, Alexis, can we convert what we have, which is like speaking a tabletop system, a brick and mortar system.
00:12:21:03 – 00:12:54:14
Alexis Samuels: Half of our schools have to shut down to go hybrid. And yet we want to continue these programs. Can you provide us with an online platform that would enable us to now? And this is why they became not only continued the education, but reduce our administrative expense, because our platform is an autonomous one. You don’t need a human monitor to manage the course. It’s all autonomous. In addition to that, it incorporates artificial intelligence through machine learning.
00:12:54:16 – 00:13:01:13
Alexis Samuels: It gets smarter and smarter. We get it. We capture the data from the system and not just
00:13:03:13 – 00:13:14:06
Alexis Samuels: socio economic data, a lot of which the schools have, but it’s also the anomaly data that we’re able to
00:13:15:29 – 00:13:22:27
Alexis Samuels: acquire through pre assessments, post assessments in this particular area or geographic.
00:13:24:20 – 00:13:50:27
Alexis Samuels: What seems to be the underlying issue when it comes to managing debt, when it comes to saving? So we’re able to capture that data with questions by percentage. Does it still get wrong? Well, our system can then require that data begin to direct them into those.
00:13:52:19 – 00:14:29:01
Alexis Samuels: Those gap areas fill the gap with supplemental information, bring them back to the main topic once again and then the feed anywhere from starting out of the 50% or 60%. The success ratio on the pre assessment to as much as a 95 to 98% completion rate on the post assessment valuable data. So we know we’re educating and we’re changing lives in that these are individuals that are developing a higher level of socioeconomic.
00:14:29:28 – 00:14:34:05
Alexis Samuels: And I’ll just mention one more point out there so as not to be too long winded.
00:14:35:21 – 00:14:44:01
Alexis Samuels: Often times when we buy financial literacy, we think about dollars and suspense budgeting, savings,
00:14:45:24 – 00:15:16:07
Alexis Samuels: retirement. And it’s true. The more financially literate you are, the better off you’ll. You’ll succeed. You’ll finish. But do we realize that lack of financial literacy is a leading, contributing factor to delinquency? To crime and violence, to prison populations. To mental health breakdown because of increased anxiety and depression.
00:15:17:19 – 00:16:01:19
Alexis Samuels: Obesity is also directly linked. To the lack of financial literacy as well as worsened mortality. So when we talk about changing lives, one of the key areas we need to enact is to teach financial literacy. And then the digital side just makes it all that much sweet because by offering not only education as to what is core, it’s included within our curriculum, but also providing them with the tools to engage with crypto through a closed education ecosystem.
00:16:02:15 – 00:16:05:15
Alexis Samuels: And what that means is.
00:16:07:11 – 00:16:41:23
Alexis Samuels: Number one, we can embed our currency excuse me. My our curriculum into a blockchain. And able, through an embed meant to distribute the curriculum globally at a fraction of the cost. And so we’ve been inviting into places through our partnership with UNICEF, a major global organization, to go into places like Uganda, Nigeria, Somalia.
00:16:42:10 – 00:17:13:12
Alexis Samuels: And in areas where this extreme poverty and where the education systems are purely top that the government may fund. They will have prime ministers of education and those wealthy families at the top. Are those ones whose families and children are better educated. Then by the time resources get out to remote villages, it’s scarce, very scarce. But.
00:17:14:09 – 00:17:44:10
Alexis Samuels: We provide them with a blockchain curriculum that enables them through just some basic technology. Battery operated laptop computer, which enables ill education in remote areas where it Internet. It wasn’t available at first. And so we’re able to take this to financial literacy and it’s blockchain that makes it possible for us to distribute it beyond this current borders.
00:17:45:04 – 00:18:29:27
Alexis Samuels: And then add to that the eco side of it in there. One of the major roadblocks to education even within this country, the United States, is the economics of it all. It’s expensive to an Ivy League school or a MIT Ivy League school. And unless the gunners providing full scholarship and even there there are many gaps within it, I think it’s difficult for families that are in impoverished communities, many of which are in New York, one of which I grew up in, to be able to afford a very, very comprehensive, good education.
00:18:30:11 – 00:18:54:23
Alexis Samuels: And so through this system, to be able to distribute evenly, no longer from the top down through a centralized system, but to gradually decentralize education. And if we want to go through the history of it all in education, the classroom started about 275 years ago and hasn’t changed much with that single
00:18:56:11 – 00:19:06:21
Alexis Samuels: red schoolhouse. And everyone inside that community attended that school, by the way, on Sundays at school was turned into a church.
00:19:08:17 – 00:19:21:26
Alexis Samuels: Funded. It was funded by either taxes from that local community or through contributions of donations from the wealthy. But what if you didn’t come from a wealthy family?
00:19:24:05 – 00:19:54:17
Alexis Samuels: It was the of the children that had access to the better education. Gradually, as the years and age passed by, those schools began to multiply. But again, that was all taxation. That made it so. If you live in a high class community that was taking in more tax dollars. Your school is going to be funded better than the school that’s in that impoverished community. We taxes are much lower.
00:19:55:00 – 00:20:27:08
Alexis Samuels: And as a result, you can’t afford to bring up on this many teachers as many programs. Quality of education is much less. And we believe here we are 21st century. And this same model continues to exist today. If you live in in the Upper East, West Side, New York City, where there’s a little bit more money there, the average family earning $180,000 a year. When they do fundraising, they easily able to raise $1,000,000 to fund fundraising programs.
00:20:27:27 – 00:20:41:14
Alexis Samuels: The other side, if you’re in the more remote areas of Brooklyn or the Bronx, where the average income in those households might be $30,000, a family of four and they’re barely getting by.
00:20:43:15 – 00:20:54:27
Alexis Samuels: Those programs for fund raising might only generate three or $4,000 a year. And that directly mirrors the quality of education in these areas.
00:20:55:15 – 00:21:30:01
Richard Carthon: And so sure, in real quick, I just want to interject just for a second what you’re creating with with with with fine lit x is that X factor of access and and a variable that is a gamified solution to teach financial literacy that is helping your users to grow over time, learn about the financial institutions of how they can be doing certain things in their life to be improving the future of of their livelihoods.
00:21:30:03 – 00:21:42:03
Richard Carthon: Just from simple lessons along the lines of knowing something as simple as not getting a $200 line of credit where you initially are getting $75 put on it. So you’re already being put in debt. Not starting that,
00:21:44:21 – 00:22:07:09
Alexis Samuels: not starting of ADD even right. Or even being able to provide access to people in other countries that don’t have the means to give the financial access and or or resources to teach about different ways that they can be doing improvements as well. So let’s talk a little bit more about how
00:22:09:03 – 00:22:23:00
Alexis Samuels: this is being implemented out and where you’re rolling this out too far. So someone’s listening to this. They’re like, yes, you’re speaking my language. I completely follow. This is an issue. How can someone who’s listening to this right now participate and utilize this?
00:22:24:01 – 00:22:37:09
Alexis Samuels: Well, our platform offers two different access points. One, for individual consumers who would just like to take the course on their own. So that’s a download.
00:22:39:21 – 00:23:10:00
Alexis Samuels: And the very idea of the expense oscillated with managing the program comes from the back end, quite frankly. And so our fee is very, very nominal. Then on the institutional side, it’s also designed for school systems regardless of the size. We started out about three years ago with the Paterson, New Jersey school system. That’s 37,000 students. And
00:23:11:18 – 00:23:16:09
Alexis Samuels: then the first one who contacted us and said, when you convert this to a one line system for us.
00:23:18:05 – 00:24:01:04
Alexis Samuels: And what’s amazing is the access is for superintendent and principal log in, blog and upload students and then skill set. The start button notification goes out to all the students. Privacy is maintained. Then the course takes over to video operations through Q and A pre assess the post assessment and a host of we would say the built in from the back end. So in this way the students are rewarded with retail access, consumer products for completing the course as well as two points that can be converted for things like travel.
00:24:02:06 – 00:24:33:06
Alexis Samuels: But then also with crypto currency, our own crypto coin called the odd coin. And just like our game gamified learning system, RTP extends for Road to Prosperity with The X Factor. So that’s the name of our coin X Coin. Now, because of regulatory realities, we’re launching the coin this fall on a discount basis.
00:24:33:18 – 00:25:02:08
Alexis Samuels: So in the verse cities that partner with agreed to reduce their tuition by 10%, which on the low side could be $3,000, and the high side will finally be five $6,000 less per semester. Well, they discount. And a part of that deal, if you will, with the universities. They have come to us and asked us to help them with the issue of diversity.
00:25:03:28 – 00:25:35:05
Alexis Samuels: A lot of the verse to these are having difficulty with equity, with diversity, bringing black and brown students into their households, if you will, by recruitment. Well, we have a large contingency in that community because of the work that we’ve been doing over the last six years. So by taking our course, the students are empowered so that they actually earn resources.
00:25:35:07 – 00:26:08:07
Alexis Samuels: They just do their own taking of the course, acquire their own scholarships, which are then accepted by these universities, and they then have better access to these universities. So it satisfies a number of different pain points in the education world and creates a circular ecosystem with our cryptocurrency. And as soon as the regulatory environment clears as for example.
00:26:10:21 – 00:26:24:14
Alexis Samuels: Many cryptocurrencies are dealing with the issue of whether or not they are a true security, and if so, then they have a C as their partner and very, very high bar. As to hurdle over
00:26:26:04 – 00:26:59:29
Alexis Samuels: my transfer licenses in all 50 states, which on average can cost about a half a million dollars to be available nationwide. So through our launch over the next six months, beginning in September, that enables us to brand to prove our utility and exemption from those regulations, at which point then our cryptocurrency is launched on various platforms and those who would like to acquire it can acquire our coin up.
00:27:00:13 – 00:27:03:04
Alexis Samuels: We we really do see a growth in value
00:27:05:00 – 00:27:25:00
Alexis Samuels: that we’re projecting could be as much as ten X within 18 after launch. But even now we believe it’s the right time to partnered partner with us because we’re in the midst of a multimillion dollar fundraise in exchange for corporate backing.
00:27:26:18 – 00:28:03:11
Alexis Samuels: Many coming forward and even staff will promise of a return on our crypto currency when that is launched as well. So it’s just an amazing time for education, the for our digital currency. And we’re going to be here for a long time. We have a we have a vision that’s global. We are we have a track record of clients. We have planned investments for major organizations. And we even picked up one about six years ago from Ken Smith, who’s the analyst, one on TNT and the NBA
00:28:04:28 – 00:28:14:06
Alexis Samuels: that’s just playing website. So we have a lot of exciting things going for us. We just we’re just delighted to be in this. We think education is the most important thing.
00:28:15:12 – 00:28:31:11
Alexis Samuels: Absolutely. And for everyone that’s listening to this and they either want to be one of the first retail users or partner with you as a university or potential investor, whomever. What are ways that they can connect with you or learn more about everything happening over at fine lit x?
00:28:32:15 – 00:28:55:04
Alexis Samuels: Well, we would invite you to go to our website, which is fine lit x if i n t x that we’re about to launch a new investor with website. It actually should launch toward the latter part of this week, and it’s going to exchange at that URL. So you’ll see a little bit more about the
00:28:57:00 – 00:29:32:13
Alexis Samuels: the opportunities that are available. We will be posting our investor deck to that website, know likely, most likely tomorrow if not this afternoon. We’re just looking at some finishing touches on the valuation. And so you’ll be able to learn everything you can learn there. If you’d like to shoot me an email, I can be reached at social at fun and lit x dot com. There’s SLC IPO and finally f i n t dot com
00:29:34:09 – 00:30:09:07
Alexis Samuels: and I answer those emails immediately and we set up calls to explain more detail. We’re talking to a lot of accredited investors right now. So again, now is the right time. It’s an exciting time for us. It’s a time for financial literacy and it’s an exciting time for our young people because we feel finally, we have a tool that that’s serving our interest not only to educate us, but also to empower us, which is so.
00:30:09:09 – 00:30:35:05
Alexis Samuels: Important. And education allows for empowerment, and empowerment allows for progress. And I think it’s really cool that you’re in the process of creating that tool that’s going to allow for a lot of financial empowerment to people who usually don’t have that type of access. So like since we as we wrap up here, what is the final thought that you want to leave with everyone listening today?
00:30:36:21 – 00:30:40:03
Alexis Samuels: Well, I’d like to encourage everyone to
00:30:42:17 – 00:30:47:13
Alexis Samuels: work with us. Partner with us. We think we have the key.
00:30:49:18 – 00:30:51:07
Alexis Samuels: Be yourself. The visual.
00:30:52:24 – 00:31:13:15
Alexis Samuels: Don’t listen to. The the chorus that’s out there that has brought us to a place of multitrillion dollar debt within this country and is feverishly trying to hold on to regulations and control the markets.
00:31:16:07 – 00:31:44:04
Alexis Samuels: There may be boundaries in front of you, but those boundaries can be overcome through education. And we feel it’s the best time right now because of since the Internet, since the invention of Bitcoin and the crypto world. That’s the pathway that we believe will lead to more independence and ultimate success. So
00:31:45:24 – 00:32:00:06
Alexis Samuels: take advantage of it. This is what naysayers are saying. Don’t look at the base model that, you know, is releasing a lot of pressure as it is about to stabilize, we believe, and then
00:32:01:29 – 00:32:04:14
Alexis Samuels: skyrocket. So take full advantage of
00:32:06:02 – 00:32:12:11
Alexis Samuels: the opportunity to have today. And I guarantee you in five, ten years, you’ll be you’ll be thankful you made that decision.
00:32:14:01 – 00:32:30:11
Alexis Samuels: We definitely appreciate that. Final thought. Delia Samuels, thank you so much for spending time sharing all that amazing information. Everyone, make sure you go check out the website, check out all the things that they have going on. And if you want to participate, you have some next steps that you can do with that. But as always, for everyone listening, take up the great.
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