High school students learn ‘financial fitness’

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LEWISTON — The Norm Nolette Chapter of Credit Unions, with support from the Jeannette G. Morin Chapter of Credit Unions, successfully presented their seventh annual Financial Fitness Money Management Experience at the Lewiston Armory on April 7.

Nearly 150 students from area high schools attended the event, including Leavitt Area High School, St. Dominic Regional High School, Oxford Hills Christian Academy, Monmouth Academy, Elan School, Oak Hill High School, Lisbon High School and Mt. Ararat High School. The day builds awareness for youth education and for credit unions’ dedication to financial literacy in their communities.

The money management experience was created to address the growing need for increased financial literacy in Maine schools and the lack of understanding that many teens experience with regard to their personal finances. The half-day event is unique because it allows students to consider a serious issue in a fun way.

Students are asked to map out what their financial future would be at the age of 22, according to a scenario packet that they receive, which determines their occupation, income and credit history. Students then have the task of creating a spending plan according to their income and expenses.

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Jon Paradise, governmental and public affairs manager for the Maine Credit Union League and the event’s master of ceremonies, said the experience is an effort to help students understand the importance of making smart financial decisions, in a difficult financial climate.

Representatives from Atlantic Regional FCU, Five County CU, Lisbon Community FCU, Midcoast FCU, Central Maine FCU, Community CU, Great Falls FCU, Lewiston Municipal FCU, Maine Family FCU, Monmouth FCU, Otis FCU, Oxford FCU, R.C.H. FCU, Rainbow FCU, Sabattus Regional CU and the Maine Credit Union League helped to organize the event.

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