Focus

WILL - Focus - March 21, 2014

The Effects of Gender-typed Toys

Were the toys you played with as a child either pink or blue?  

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(Duration: 51:54)

Supriya Hobbs and Janna Eaves are painfully aware that they are surrounded by mostly male students in their engineering classes at the University of Illinois. That’s part of the reason they’re behind the new start-up Miss Possible Inc., a toy company with intentions to manufacture dolls for girls fashioned after historical figures like Marie Curie and Amelia Earhart.

“Most toys, especially dolls, are empty,” says Hobbs, “Entrepreneur Barbie wears a suit and has a smart phone; that makes her a CEO?”

This hour on Focus, Scott Cameron talks with Hobbs about the start-up, and why Hobbs and Eaves want girls to be interested in science and technology. We’ll also hear from Analisa Russo, part of the company Electroninks, which is bringing a gel pen to draw circuits to market this summer. Isabelle Cherney, a researcher at Creighton University, will tell us how the toys we play can have an effect on our perceived capabilities and our gender identity.  

Then, we’ll switch gears at the end of the hour when Jake Kuebler of Bluestem Financial Advisors, LLC in Champaign joins us to discuss issues in personal finance.  


WILL - Focus - January 17, 2014

Personal Finance: Money Mentors

How did you learn how to manage your money? This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks personal finance with Kathy Sweedler and Kevin Waspi. We welcome your calls and questions!

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(Duration: 51:40)

a dollar with some cents

Who taught you how to balance your checkbook? Be responsible with your credit card?  The state of Illinois mandates that all students in public schools should be taught the basics of personal finance, but according to University of Illinois Extension Educator Kathy Sweedler, that doesn’t ensure  financially literacy. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Sweedler about a new program called Money Mentors that aims to help answer personal finance questions through peer counseling.

Chartered Financial Analyst Kevin Wapsi also joins us this hour on Focus. The stock market set several record highs in 2013, we’ll talk with him about what we might expect out of 2014 and what things you should be thinking about looking forward to this year’s tax season.  Or course, this hour on Focus, we also welcome your personal finance questions whether you’re looking at buying a car, sending a child to college or just starting out. 

Read more for this month's couch potato porfolio.

Categories: Personal Finance

WILL - Focus - December 20, 2013

Personal Finance: Retirement

Today on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Kevin Waspi, a chartered financial analyst and Kathy Sweedler, a consumer economics educator for University of Illinois Extension. We welcome your calls and questions!

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(Duration: 51:46)

a dollar with some cents

Illinois isn’t the only place where pension funding has been a problem. Many private companies have been dropping pension plans in favor of other retirement packages, like 401 K’s, in recent years, and the federal government’s new budget deal also targets pension funds as a way to save money. This hour on Focus, we’ll talk with personal finance experts Kevin Waspi and Kathy Sweedler about saving for retirement, what your options are and how to plan for how money comes and goes through your lifetime.

Or course, this hour on Focus, we also welcome your personal finance questions whether you’re looking at buying a car, sending a child to college or just starting out.

Read more for this month's updated Couch Potato Porfolio.

Categories: Personal Finance

WILL - Focus - November 15, 2013

Personal Finance

Today on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Kevin Waspi, a chartered financial analyst and Jake Kuebler, a certified financial planner with Bluestem Financial Advisors in Champaign. We welcome your calls and questions!

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(Duration: 51:50)

a dollar with some cents

The stock market continues to set new record highs and this hour on Focus, we’ll talk with personal finance experts Kevin Waspi and Jake Kuebler about what that means for your investment portfolio. We’ll also talk about holiday spending during this hour on Focus. Economists predict spending will be down this season; we’ll talk about why and will find out how that could affect you.

As we’re quickly approaching end of year finance questions, host Jim Meadows also talks with Waspi and Kuebler about what you can be doing to get ready for tax season. And as always, we welcome your personal finance questions whether you’re planning for retirement, just starting out and looking at buying a home or trying to figure out how to manage your budget.

Read more to see this month's updated couch potato porfolio.

Categories: Personal Finance

WILL - Focus - September 20, 2013

Personal Finance

Today on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Kevin Waspi, a chartered financial analyst and Jake Kuebler, a certified financial planner with Bluestem Financial Advisors in Champaign. We welcome your calls and questions!

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(Duration: 51:37)

a dollar with some cents

The Dow Jones industrial average hit a record high Wednesday after a decision by the Federal Reserve to keep its economic stimulus in place. This hour on Focus, we’ll talk with personal finance experts Kevin Waspi and Jake Kuebler about what the means for your pocketbook. We’ll also talk about whether or not investing in bond is a good idea with interest rates on the rise. As always, we welcome your personal finance questions whether you’re planning for retirement, just starting out and looking at buying a home or trying to figure out how to manage your budget.

Categories: Personal Finance

WILL - Focus - July 19, 2013

Personal Finance: Joining Finances

Today on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Kevin Waspi, a chartered financial analyst and lecturer at the UIUC College of Business and Jake Kuebler, a Certified Financial Planner with Bluestem Financial Advisors in Champaign. We welcome your calls and questions!

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(Duration: 51:38)

a dollar with some cents

It’s wedding season, and there are lots of people about to embark on a life together… After all the champagne is gone, however, there’s the very practical concern about what that means for the couple financially. To create a joint checking account or not to create a joint checking account?  This hour on Focus, Jim Meadows talks with personal finance experts Kevin Waspi and Jake Kuebler about ways to handle newly-wedded finance.

And we’ll of course welcome your questions whether you are just starting out and looking for advice on investing, thinking about buying a home or planning for retirement.

Read more for the updated Couch Potato Portfolio.

Categories: Personal Finance

WILL - Focus - June 21, 2013

Personal Finance: Tracking Spending

Today on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Kevin Waspi, a chartered financial analyst and Jake Kuebler, a certified financial planner with Bluestem Financial Advisors, LLC in Champaign. We welcome your calls and questions about your finances!

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(Duration: 51:42)

the mint.com

This hour on Focus, we’ll talk about the best ways to track your spending and how doing so can help you meet your financial goals. Personal finance expert Kevin Waspi and certified financial planner Jake Kuebler will be here to talk with us about the best ways to keep track of where your money is going, whether you want to do it the old-fashioned way with pen and paper or if you want to do it electronically using online banking tools and apps. We also welcome your questions whether you are just starting out and looking for advice on investing, thinking about buying a home or planning for retirement.

Read more for the couch potato porfolio.

Categories: Personal Finance

WILL - Focus - May 17, 2013

Personal Finance - Saving Money

Today on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Kevin Waspi, a certified financial advisor and lecturer at the UIUC College of Business. We welcome your calls and questions this hour!

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(Duration: 51:22)

This hour on Focus, we talk with personal finance expert Kevin Waspi about some good tricks to save money for things like a new car or a summer vacation. We'll also talk about when it's right to continue to save and when it's time to try and borrow money. Do you have questions about your personal finances?We also welcome your questions for Kevin whether you are just starting out and looking for advice on investing, thinking about buying a home or sending your children to college.

Do you have any money saving tricks that you recommend? We want to hear them!

Categories: Personal Finance

WILL - Focus - May 10, 2013

Find Out More About What’s Coming Up Next Week on Focus

We'll talk about the psychology of summer camp, the case for comics in the classroom, personal finance and more! 

Next week on Focus, we’ll talk about the magic of summer camp, the growing need for translators and why some are pushing for comics in schools.


WILL - Focus - April 19, 2013

Personal Finance - Money Smart Week

Friday on Focus, we talked about personal finance. The 8:00 p.m. rebroadcast of this program is being preempted due to breaking news reagrding the Boston Marathon bombing case. 

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(Duration: 50:09)

With more and more Americans falling into debt and feeling stress that comes with failing finances, the Federal Reserve bank in Chicago created the Money Smart Week program in 2002 to promote financial literacy and offer chances for consumers of any income level to learn how to better manage their money. Through collaboration with several banks and non-profit organizations, there are “Money Smart Week” events taking place through the end of next week across the state. This hour on Focus, guest host Kimberlie Kranich talks with Karen Chan, Illinois Chair of the Money Smart Week program. Chan has nearly two decades of experience teaching about personal finance. We’ll talk with her about the courses being offered in and around Champaign and ask her about how to manage your credit, how to get out of debt and how to plan for retirement.

Kevin Waspi, certified financial advisor and lecturer at the University of Illinois College of Business, also joins the show. As he does on the third Friday of every month, he’ll be here to answer your calls and questions whether you’re just starting out and looking for advice on investing, or thinking about buying a home or sending your children to college.


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