Matt Pagan – Total Pay App

My full name is Matt Pagan and I’m a Marine stationed at Camp Lejeune, NC. After graduating from the Naval Academy with a Quantitative Economics background, I developed a passion to help others with their finances. As a leader of Marines, I would go around asking Marines basic questions about their military pay, such as how much they earned, how their pay was broken up, what they rated, etc. and quickly discovered that a majority of them simply did not know. My wrestling coach at the Naval Academy always taught me to “seek brilliance in the basics and do them all the time” so I wanted to create something that was simple, easy to use and could be referenced anytime.

The Total Pay app was designed to be a super quick way to view military pay. The app eliminates the time having to go online to look up and search through the various military pay charts. The app could be used anywhere with no Internet connection necessary, which benefits military members who are in the field or deployed with no connectivity. One of the best features is that users are able to look up BAH Rates for any location, which benefits those who are changing duty stations. The app currently contains the latest 2013 military pay info and once downloaded from the App Store, users will be provided with free updates for life.

My overall vision is to get military members more involved in their military finances, especially the younger personnel. I feel more should be done at the unit level to help these individuals being that a majority are straight out of high school and lack experience with their finances. Currently, I teach a financial class every Friday to my Marines in an effort to help them get the basics down. Information is shared on topics such as budgeting, investing, credit scores, and the Thrift Savings Plan. The Marines are engaged and ask a lot of good questions. They seem to enjoy and benefit from the information being shared and have deemed the day “Financial Fridays.”