By BAYLI HELMICK
BUCKHANNON, W.Va. — Students at Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School participated in the “Get a Life” program Tuesday, developed by Fairmont State University for state Treasure John Perdue’s NetWorth Program to teach children about managing financial situations through a budget system.
The students are shown information about what their job, family and monthly income might be without post-secondary education. Then students complete a variety of activities that include purchasing a car and house, electric, appliances and insurance for their homes, cars and health, plus buying gas and groceries for their families. Throughout this, if the students go over their income in bills and necessities, they have to add their purchases onto a credit card.
The students are then given information about what they could expect if they complete a post-secondary education, such as going to trade schools or earning college degrees. Then they performed the activity over again. The students find that, with a better education, they can afford more items and have to charge nothing or very little to their credit.
The program helps teach the children the importance of having a budget and sacrificing items like a nice car or a TV for health insurance and groceries for their families. They also learn the difficulties of providing basic necessities for a family and themselves without post-secondary education.
The program hopes to equip students with the skills to make better financial decisions in the near future, and show them that higher education broadens their career choices.
A representative from Mountain Cap, Lori Hagi, presented the program to the students, showing them what youth services Mountain Caps provides.
This is the first year BUMS has been able to participate in the program.
Students from Buckhannon-Upshur High School participated in the event Tuesday by helping the B-UMS students in making the different life choices through the game.
Renee Warner, the B-UMS principal, expressed the importance of education and career planning for children of this age group, considering much of the information is not covered in class objectives.
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