Bourne High School Juniors Learn Fiscal Responsibility at Annual Credit For Life Fair

Credit for Life 2021
BOURNE -- Superintendent Kerri Anne Quinlan-Zhou and Principal Amy Cetner are pleased to announce that Bourne High School held a successful event last week aimed at teaching students about fiscal expectations and responsibility.
On Friday, Dec. 10, approximately 80 students took part in the Credit for Life fair in the Bourne High School cafeteria. The event is held annually for the entire 11th grade BHS class. The fair seeks to give students a “reality check” on how much money they would realistically be working with if they continue on their chosen career path.
While the school has held the fair for many years, more recently it has become tied into the high school’s Career Readiness and Personal Finance curriculum that all sophomores and juniors take, respectively.
Based on the associated salary of their chosen occupation, students at the fair are tasked with budgeting real-life expenses, such as housing, transportation, education, insurance and more. They are given checking and savings accounts, as well as a credit card, and are also hit with real-life pop-up scenarios along the way such as winning the lottery or being the victim of identity theft.
Once students have completed all of the sections, they discuss their financial status with a volunteer to see how well they did.
The Credit for Life Fair is sponsored and run by Cape Cod 5 bank. The school works closely with Jim Curran and Michelle Mahoney from CC5 each year to plan and execute the event.
Last year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CC5 took the event and turned it into an interactive online portal, and the school continued with that model again this year. Students brought their Chromebooks and logged into the portal (found here) at the start of the event. They choose an avatar and an occupation on their computer to help guide them through the fair.
“This event definitely serves as an eye-opener to many students, with how many different factors there are that go into a budget, and how far, or not far, a salary can go,” said guidance counselor Kimberly Iannucci, who helped plan the event. “And it also gives them an introduction/repetition of things they are learning in their Personal Finance course. We want to thank Cape Cod 5 bank for their continued support, including sending many helpful volunteers who work with our students and give them real-world advice and feedback.”
All Bourne High School sophomores are required to take the Career Readiness course, in which they learn about different career paths, resume writing, the job interview process, and more. Juniors are then required to take the Personal Finance course, which teaches about household budgeting, long-term financial planning and decision-making and investing for retirement.
“Through these courses, there is a concerted effort to make sure our students are not only given the tools they need to succeed while in school but also after they graduate and enter the real world,” Principal Cetner said. “The Credit for Life fair is a terrific example of our overarching Career Pathways initiative, which is intended to prepare students for their lives after BHS, whether it be entering the workforce or going to a two- or four-year college.”

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