It’s never too early to get a good dose of reality and future planning, and that was the goal of an exercise at the Jr/Sr High before winter break. In what has been titled as Reality Day, teachers and administrators coordinated with local bankers from Huntington Bank to come and speak to students on the financial realities that they were going to face in the future.

In the classrooms, the eighth-grade students were to select careers that they would enjoy after high school or college. These could be firemen, teachers, executives…anything was on the block when choosing a career. The learning experience came through planning. Each career had the median earnings associated with it, and students were then tasked with creating a budget given their earnings. This is where the experts came in.

Working with the financial advisors and bankers from Huntington, the students were tasked with figuring out what they could afford, making decisions about transportation, food, clothing, even how many theoretical kids they were going to have. Some of the decisions were hard to make; was a medium sized car going to be big enough or could they afford an SUV for their family? Could they afford to take an annual vacation? Was there enough left over at the end of a month to make investments or put some income away in savings?

Giving the students the opportunity to see just how expensive life can be is a big step for most. While some have a good grasp on the financial aspect of life after high school, seeing how much certain careers make and getting a feel for costs of living such as insurance, housing, transportation can be a large eye-opener for students. Thank you to all those that helped participate from Huntington Bank.