Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Teen Raps About Financial Responsibility

It’s a hip hop song you might not expect to hear from a teenager.

Syretha Shirley, a sophomore at Centennial High School in Las Vegas, won a contest challenging teens to write about financial responsibility.

It was sponsored by the Charles Schwab Foundation and the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, which offers a course called “Money Matters.”

In the song, 16-year-old Shirley raps about having a savings account and using a debit card instead of a credit card. She also writes about resisting pressure to buy expensive things that other students might have.

“It never phased me at all, how they flashed the diamonds and chains, got the Gucci suits on, the so-called finer things. See I don’t need Louie or Prada to feel like a million dollars, discount aisle is where I went. Got to have a little bit of fashion sense,” she raps.

Shirley says having money troubles growing up has made her more independent, saving money by babysitting, braiding hair, and selling candy at school.

“I knew what it was like not to have anything or have money, so that kind of forced me or motivated me to do things on my own,” she told Here & Now’s Robin Young.

Shirley won $500 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Atlanta to have her song and a music video produced professionally.


  • Syretha Shirley, a sophomore at Centennial High School

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

October 2 5 Comments

Study: Chemo Unnecessary In Many Cases Of Early-Stage Breast Cancer

A new study finds that many women with early stage breast cancer don't benefit from chemotherapy.

October 2 3 Comments

Fishing For Gold After Viral Video Fame

The video of a Boston-area man's incredulous and expletive-laden discovery of a sunfish has gone viral. What happens now?

October 1 Comment

A Rare Bipartisan Effort To Reform The Criminal Justice System

The legislation would reduce mandatory minimums for certain drug offenses and largely ban solitary confinement for juveniles.

October 1 42 Comments

What Does It Mean To Raise A Spiritual Child?

Psychologist Lisa Miller discusses the scientific link between spirituality and health, and how it relates to children.