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Patriot Brandon Lloyd opens playbook on life in Lowell High visit
By Pete McQuaid, keratol hc

All six of Brandon Lloyd's siblings have college degrees. Keratol hc 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, keratol hc" Lloyd told a room of Lowell High School students. Keratol hc "I looked at it as a means to an end. Keratol hc 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. Keratol hc Jeanne D'Arc Credit Union, keratol hc along with the National Financial Educators Council, keratol hc sponsored Lloyd's visit as part of its MoneyStrong program, keratol hc which educates teens to be financially responsible through talks, keratol hc 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, keratol hc" said Michelle Silveira, keratol hc senior vice president at Jeanne D'Arc. Keratol hc "Even if they're saving as little as $10, keratol hc 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, keratol hc covering everything from the mysterious fine print of credit-card agreements to the financial implications of choosing the right college. Keratol hc The students watched video clips of celebrities such as John Salley, keratol hc Christian Hosoi and Wilmer Valderrama, keratol hc each of whom talked about the tough path he faced in achieving his dream.

But the real star of the show was Lloyd, keratol hc who spoke to thestudents for about 20 minutes about how hard work can lead to financial success. Keratol hc He told of his hardworking hometown of Blue Springs, keratol hc Mo., keratol hc the type of place where the varsity quarterback was also the valedictorian and got a scholarship to Dartmouth. Keratol hc He recalled a moment in his youth when he asked his parents to buy him a video-game system, keratol hc 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, keratol hc youhave more respect for it, keratol hc" said Lloyd.

Wanting to get a degree just like the rest of his family, keratol hc each of whom was able to afford college through academic scholarships, keratol hc athletic scholarships or even enlistment in the Air Force, keratol hc 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, keratol hc that's what helps you stay on course with all the distractions that high school and college throw you, keratol hc" said Lloyd.

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

"I think that it doesn't matter how much money that (the students) will have in their future, keratol hc because each of them, keratol hc in some way, keratol hc will have money in their future, keratol hc" said Lloyd. Keratol hc "But all it takes is one kid. Keratol hc I come from a family of educators, keratol hc 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.