“Live!” High Pressure Reality Budgeting Exercise for Students

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: River Ridge Hawks to Play the “Super Bowl” of Financial Reality as Legislators Watch   

When: February 6, 2014; State Capitol South Lawn near Tivoli Fountain – 8 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Lynn Heider
503.358.0773 (Mobile)

“Live!” High Pressure Reality Budgeting Exercise for Students

(Olympia, Wash.) – The River Ridge High School Hawks celebrate the championship win of their namesake team this week with a high-pressure challenge of their own: a live budgeting exercise at the Capitol as Washington’s lawmakers look on. The Financial Reality Fair will put 100 River Ridge students through a life-like budgeting exercise in which they are assigned an entry level career and salary, and then work their way through a maze of spending temptations from necessities to luxuries such as entertainment and tattoos. By the end of the hour, the students must have a balanced budget.

The Northwest Credit Union Foundation (NWCUF) is sponsoring the Financial Reality Fair during Credit Union Day at the Capitol in Olympia on Thursday, February 6, with sessions beginning at 8:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.
“Credit unions play a critical role filling in financial education gaps students may not be getting at school,” said Kim Vu, executive director of the NWCUF. “Many of these students will be out on their own in the next year – maybe working or paying for college, and it’s important they learn in a hands-on setting what it’s like to spend within your means.”

The Foundation has assembled a team of volunteers from credit unions across Washington, who will act as mock merchants, putting the hard-sell on the students to simulate real world decision making. The Foundation chose the setting just in front of the dome so that legislators could see the credit union financial outreach mission in action.

“Credit unions, as not-for-profit, member-driven cooperatives, value their social missions as much as their economic missions,” said Steve Wilder, who chairs the NWCUF board. “Legislators and reporters are welcome to work their way through the Financial Reality Fair exercise as well. Bring it on!”

“The Reality Fair is a great opportunity for legislators to see how much appetite and passion there is for financial education, as well as what credit unions are already doing to provide it,” Vu said.


The Northwest Credit Union Foundation (NWCUF) is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to identifying and nurturing partnerships that bring together Northwest credit unions, community organizations and nonprofits to improve and grow the regional economy. Our mission is to cultivate opportunities and develop leaders that improve the well-being of our communities we serve. We provide credit unions and community partners with support that promotes asset-building, economic empowerment and cooperative development and believe these focus areas contribute to long term sustainability for the Northwest and for credit unions making investments in their members and communities.

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