Kickstart to Career FAQs

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KICKSTART TO CAREER

Frequently Asked Questions

Les Cheneaux Community Foundation’s Children’s Savings Accounts Project: KICKSTART to a Career

What is KickStart to Career?

KickStart to Career is a Children’s Savings Account (CSA) program designed to assist with post-secondary education expenses. Currently there are CSA programs in many states. Ours will be the 5th CSA program in the state of Michigan. The program is managed by The Les Cheneaux Community Foundation, in collaboration with Soo co-op Credit Union and Les Cheneaux Community Schools.

Who can participate?

Each kindergarten student in the Les Cheneaux Community Schools has the opportunity to be the beneficiary of an account at the Soo co-op Credit Union opened with a $50 deposit from the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation.

What type of account is it?

Accounts are deposit-only, which means the funds remain on deposit until Les Cheneaux Community Foundation approves a withdrawal for future education and career-related expenses. Accounts are owned by Les Cheneaux Community Foundation, but the funds are held in trust for the student and available for withdrawal upon graduation from high school. Withdrawals must be a qualified withdrawal and approved by the Community Foundation.

Initial deposits and funds earned from incentives will be directly deposited into the student’s account by Les Cheneaux Community Foundation. Additional private deposits can be made at any Soo co-op Credit Union in person or by mail. The account number is required in order to make private deposits.

Do I own the account?

No. The Les Cheneaux Community Foundation is the owner of the account, but the funds are held in trust for each child when they need them for post-secondary education purposes.

Is this an interest bearing account?

Yes, accounts earn interest. Interest will be compounded each calendar quarter and will be credited accordingly. Accounts are not subject to balance or transaction fees.

How is my interest paid to me?

Interest will be compounded each calendar quarter and will be credited to your account each calendar quarter.

Is there a minimum balance to open the account?

No. The Les Cheneaux Community Foundation will make your first deposit of $50.

What fees will be charged to my account?

Your account is not subject to balance or transaction fees as long as a minimum of one deposit is made annually.

May I, or my family members, make additional deposits?

Yes, additional deposits are accepted at any time. They are also encouraged!

Are there other incentives for my child to receive additional funds other than the opening balance?

Yes. The Les Cheneaux Community Foundation will contribute additional funds by matching up to $25 in private deposits made to the child’s account each school year. The Foundation is also looking for additional partners to add incentives for earnings.

How do I make deposits to my account?

You can to make a deposit or mail a deposit to the Soo co-op Credit Union. If you would like to set up recurring deposits, please see a Soo co-op Credit Union representative.

Are there limits on how much I may deposit?

There is a $50,000.00 maximum limit for the life of the account.

How do I make withdrawals from my account?

The Les Cheneaux Community Foundation will approve your withdrawals.

How can funds in the account be used?

Funds can be used for any qualifying educational expenses after high school. Such expenses may include, but are not limited to: tuition, mandatory fees, books, supplies, and equipment required for enrollment or attendance, or for any other necessary cost of attending school, including travel to and from school, or for school application fees.

What if I don’t use all the funds in my account?

If there are any funds remaining, once the certificate of deposit matures, funds will be disbursed to the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation. They will then pay you the total of your private fund balance, including any earned interest.

What if I graduate from college and still have funds left in my account?

You can contact the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation and complete an Education Completion Withdrawal form.

What if my family encounters a hardship?

Please contact the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation to discuss the possibility of an early withdrawal of private funds.

What if I join the military before college?

Please contact the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation to arrange an extension to the maturity date of your certificate of deposit.

Do I or my parents have to claim the interest earned as income?

Interest earned on private deposits not used for educational purposes may be subject to IRS reporting; please seek professional tax advice.

Are my deposits tax-deductible?

No, they are not.

How will I know what my balance is?

You may view your statement by following the directions from the Soo co-op Credit Union’s Web page or calling the LCCF office 906-484-2484.

What if I move?

You are still considered a participant in the program and can continue to make deposits and request withdrawals for post-secondary education needs. Update your address by contacting the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation.

Who can inquire about my account?

A parent or guardian can be added to the account as an Account Contact. This will allow them to inquire about balances and update your address with the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation and the Soo co-op Credit Union.

How long will this project last?

At this time, the Les Cheneaux Community Foundation initiated this project as a pilot project in 2019 and is to run for five years. At year four, the project will be reviewed for its impact, administrative requirements, financial requirements, etc., for a determination about continuing the project for students through graduation.