Aroostook Credit Unions prepare students for financial future

10 years ago

    LIMESTONE, Maine — On March 25, the Aroostook Chapter of Credit Unions presented its Annual Financial Fitness Money Management Experience for high school students from throughout Aroostook County in conjunction with Jobs for Maine Graduates at the Loring Job Corps in Limestone.  

    Representatives from Acadia FCU, NorState FCU, The County FCU, and the Maine Credit Union League have helped to organize the event, which saw approximately 400 high school students participating in this year’s Fair, which is the largest in the state, and part of Maine’s credit unions’ continued leadership on helping teenagers to better understand financial education and money management.

    The day, which can be compared to an interactive ‘game of life,’ builds awareness for youth education and for credit unions’ dedication to financial literacy throughout their communities. The Financial Fitness Money Management Experience is a half-day event during which students will check in and receive a scenario packet of their life at age 22. The packet includes their occupations, income and credit history. From there, students will have to map out their financial future from financing their housing to purchasing food and clothing.  

    Dan Bagley of The County FCU and one of the organizers of the Fair, said the experience is an effort to help students understand the importance of making smart financial decision at any age.  
    “With these students having heard a lot said on the troubled economy in the last few years, this event actually gives them the opportunity to better prepare themselves by truly understanding the importance of being financially fit,” he explained. “These students are preparing to enter the real world, be it through applying to college or joining the work force. In order to be successful, it is necessary to have a strong understanding of money and how to spend and save. The interactive nature of this event gives them a hands-on way to gain these important skills.”

    Feedback from students was that the event was “eye-opening.” One student said, “Managing money is really tough; I understand what my mom has to go through every week.”  Another added, “Now, I know why we can’t just do take-out every night because it adds up.  This really helps me as I prepare to go off to college.”