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Patriot Brandon Lloyd opens playbook on life in Lowell High visit
By Pete McQuaid, find desyrel online

All six of Brandon Lloyd's siblings have college degrees. Find desyrel online And he would have had one too -- if he didn't leave school early to play in the National Football League.

"I never saw sports as my future, find desyrel online" Lloyd told a room of Lowell High School students. Find desyrel online "I looked at it as a means to an end. Find desyrel online I knew I wanted a major institutional degree in broadcast journalism."

It was this drive for success that the Patriots wide receiver stressed in his visit to Lowell High on Tuesday morning. Find desyrel online Jeanne D'Arc Credit Union, find desyrel online along with the National Financial Educators Council, find desyrel online sponsored Lloyd's visit as part of its MoneyStrong program, find desyrel online which educates teens to be financially responsible through talks, find desyrel online workshops and first-loan programs.

"The program is such a great education for kids coming out of school or going into college to learn about saving, find desyrel online" said Michelle Silveira, find desyrel online senior vice president at Jeanne D'Arc. Find desyrel online "Even if they're saving as little as $10, find desyrel online that's still making a difference."

Members of Jeanne D'Arc's financial-education department put on a presentation for about 100 Lowell High seniors, find desyrel online covering everything from the mysterious fine print of credit-card agreements to the financial implications of choosing the right college. Find desyrel online The students watched video clips of celebrities such as John Salley, find desyrel online Christian Hosoi and Wilmer Valderrama, find desyrel online each of whom talked about the tough path he faced in achieving his dream.

But the real star of the show was Lloyd, find desyrel online who spoke to thestudents for about 20 minutes about how hard work can lead to financial success. Find desyrel online He told of his hardworking hometown of Blue Springs, find desyrel online Mo., find desyrel online the type of place where the varsity quarterback was also the valedictorian and got a scholarship to Dartmouth. Find desyrel online He recalled a moment in his youth when he asked his parents to buy him a video-game system, find desyrel online which he soon learned he would have to buy himself after mowing more than a couple of lawns.

"Once you view money as something that requires labor, find desyrel online youhave more respect for it, find desyrel online" said Lloyd.

Wanting to get a degree just like the rest of his family, find desyrel online each of whom was able to afford college through academic scholarships, find desyrel online athletic scholarships or even enlistment in the Air Force, find desyrel online Lloyd parlayed his considerable athletic ability (and dinner-plate-sized hands) into a football scholarship at the University of Illinois.

"When you have that discipline and focus, find desyrel online that's what helps you stay on course with all the distractions that high school and college throw you, find desyrel online" said Lloyd.

Lloyd took a tour of Lowell High when he arrived at about 9 a.m. Find desyrel online After the presentation, find desyrel online he sat in on a business class and ate lunch in the school restaurant. Find desyrel online Though he encountered many Patriots fans, find desyrel online Lloyd feels like his life lessons are universal and that as long as somebody learns a thing or two, find desyrel online he's happy.

"I think that it doesn't matter how much money that (the students) will have in their future, find desyrel online because each of them, find desyrel online in some way, find desyrel online will have money in their future, find desyrel online" said Lloyd. Find desyrel online "But all it takes is one kid. Find desyrel online I come from a family of educators, find desyrel online and one thing my dad would always say is that he'd teach all these years for one student to get something out of it."

Follow Pete McQuaid on Twitter @sweetestpete.