Nebraska’s 529 College Savings Plans (NEST), First National Bank of Omaha, Nebraska State Treasurer Don Stenberg and the Nebraska Library Commission announced today the NEST Read to Win $529! Drawing as part of library summer reading programs across the state. Almost $8,000 in NEST 529 College Savings scholarships and more than $3,700 in donations to libraries will be awarded.
The announcement was made during preschool story time at Eiseley Branch Library in Lincoln.
Fifteen summer readers, five in each of Nebraska’s three congressional districts, will be randomly drawn from those who complete a summer reading program. Each winner will receive $529 in a NEST college savings account. The library of each winner will receive a $250 donation. To enter, children must register for the summer reading program at their libraries and complete the program as defined by their libraries.
“This is a perfect partnership for the Nebraska State Treasurer’s Office,” Stenberg said. “We know that children eagerly have been participating in summer reading programs at their local libraries for years without monetary incentives. But the NEST 529 Read to Win! Drawing is an ideal opportunity to recognize summer readers and help them see the connection between reading and learning. Maybe in doing so, we plant a seed for their future educational endeavors and a greater awareness of the benefits of saving through our Nebraska Educational Savings Trust, known as NEST.”
“NEST is proud to support the educational efforts of Nebraska’s children as well as the great work of the libraries statewide,” said Deborah Goodkin, Managing Director of NEST at First National Bank of Omaha, the NEST Program Manager. “With the libraries encouraging leisure reading during the summer, children can daydream and think of places they want to go and what they want to be. We hope this scholarship program encourages children and families to get involved in summer reading and complete the program with a little extra incentive for a possible scholarship.”
“Nebraska public libraries’ summer reading programs are great opportunities for children and teens to have the time to enjoy reading while maintaining and improving reading skills. They can also enjoy the many activities that are part of this year’s Every Hero Has a Story summer reading program,” said Nebraska Library Commission Director Rod Wagner. “As places for learning, libraries are a natural partner for NEST—helping to illustrate the importance of children and their parents setting aside money for college education. The Nebraska Library Commission is pleased to join with the Nebraska State Treasurer, First National Bank of Omaha, Regional Library Systems, and Nebraska public libraries to promote lifelong learning, financial education and planning.”
Winners will be drawn from the names of children who complete the summer reading program as submitted at the end of their programs by libraries throughout Nebraska. Winners will be announced during college savings month in September.
For official scholarship rules, visit the NEST College Savings Plans at www.NEST529.com, the State Treasurer's Office at treasurer.nebraska.gov/csp/ or the Nebraska Library Commission at http://nlc.nebraska.gov.
NEST is a tax-advantaged 529 college savings plan and provides four plans to help make saving for college simple and affordable: NEST Direct College Savings Plan, the NEST Advisor College Savings Plan, the TD Ameritrade 529 College Savings Plan, and the State Farm College Savings Plan. The Nebraska State Treasurer serves as Program Trustee. First National Bank of Omaha serves as Program Manager, and all investments are approved by the Nebraska Investment Council. Families nationwide are saving for college using Nebraska’s 529 College Savings Plans, which have more than 261,000 accounts, including 84,000 in Nebraska. Visit NEST529.com and treasurer.nebraska.gov for more information.
About First National Bank of Omaha
First National Bank of Omaha is a subsidiary of First National of Nebraska. First National of Nebraska and its affiliates have more than $23 billion in assets and 5,000 employee associates. Primary banking offices are located in Nebraska, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, South Dakota and Texas.
About Nebraska Library Commission
As Nebraska's state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services-"bringing together people and information." Visit http://booksarejustthebeginning.com/ for more examples of how Books Are Just the Beginning at Nebraska libraries.