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

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

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

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

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

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