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Approximately 140 James Buchanan High School seniors participated in a Financial Reality Fair hosted by 1st Ed Credit Union on May 4, 2018. The seniors chose their entry-level jobs and researched a starting salary a few weeks before the fair. On fair day, they were each given a budgeting worksheet with their career information as well as any student loans and money they already had in their checking and savings accounts. They used these worksheets to visit booths where volunteers from the school and community helped students decide which car they should purchase, how much food they’ll need for the month, or what kind of internet and cable they wanted for their house. After visiting all of the booths, the students sat down with a credit union financial counselor to see if they were spending within their budget. Some students were sent back to make less expensive choices, others chose to get a second job to cover their extra spending and others had money left over to invest back into themselves and pay off their debts faster. Each student left the fair with a new outlook on what life may be like after graduation.


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