Financial Fitness Fairs

More than 45,000 Maine Students Have Gotten Fiscally Fit Through One Of Our Fairs!

Founded in 2004, Maine credit unions introduced a new concept in youth financial education through Financial Fitness - A Money Management Experience.  This award-winning, half-day event targets high school juniors and seniors and is similar to the game of "LIFE," where participating students are given a career and monthly income and then have to visit booths associated with various expenses that the average adult is faced with each month.  Costs, such as transportation, housing, clothing, food, student loans, insurance and several other everyday expenses, are filled in on a monthly budget form by each student.  At the end of the event, the goal is for students to have monthly budget that does not exceed monthly income.  Download an information brochure here

The final, in-person fairs for the 2016/17 school year are complete, but scheduling for the 2017/18 school year is underway.  It costs nothing for a school to host a fair, and is TIME WELL SPENT!  For information on scheduling a fair or having a school participate in one, please email us.

The 2016/17 school year was the busiest ever with 40+ fairs taking place during the school year.  A total of 7,617 students participated in one of our fairs. Below is a list of most scheduled fairs for the 2016/17 school year. 

2016/17 Fairs (NOTE: Not all fairs in person, or online are included in this listing):

  • Friday, September 23, 2016 (Town & Country FCU) - Southern Maine Community College, South Portland - Open to all Freshmen - 125 attendees
  • Wednesday, October 19, 2016 (Cumberland County - Alex Ferguson) - Portland High School, Portland - 187 students 
  • Wednesday, October 19, 2016 (Town & Country FCU) - Scarborough High School, Scarborough - 250 students
  • Wednesday, October 19, 2016 (Kennebec Valley Chapter) - NEW - Maranacook High School, Readfield - 110 students
  • Wednesday, November 2, 2016 (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Sacopee Valley High School, Hiram - 100 students
  • Thursday, November 10 (Oxford FCU) - Buckfield Jr/Sr High School, Buckfield - 125 students
  • Tuesday, January 17, 2017 (New Dimensions FCU) - NEW - Messalonskee High School, Oakland - 721 students
  • Friday, January 27, 2017 (York County FCU) - NEW - Sanford High School, Sanford (mix of in-person and online) - 210 students
  • Thursday, March 9, 2017 (Oxford FCU) - Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, Norway - 250 students
  • Wednesday, March 22, 2017 (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Falmouth High School, Falmouth - 200 participants
  • Wednesday, March 22, 2017 (York Chapter) - Maine Correctional Center, Windham - 100 participants
  • Wednesday, March 29, 2017 (Norm Nolette Chapter, with assistance from Jeannette G. Morin Chapter) - Lewiston Armory, Lewiston - 270 students
  • Wednesday, March 29, 2017 (Oxford FCU) - Mountain Valley High School, Rumford - 125 students
  • Wednesday, April 5, 2017 (Oxford FCU) - Dirigo High School, Dixfield - 125 students
  • Wednesday, April 5, 2017 (York Chapter) - Marshwood High School, Eliot - 180 students
  • Wednesday, April 12, 2017 (York Chapter) - York High School, York - 150 students
  • Wednesday, April 12, 2017 (Northern Penobscot Chapter) - Lee Academy, Lee - 150 sutdents
  • Wednesday, April 12, 2017 (Bangor Chapter) - Washington County Fair, Washington Academy, Machias - 200 students
  • Friday, April 14, 2017 (Maine Highlands FCU) - NEW - JMG students from area schools, Foxcroft Academy, Dover-Foxcroft - 130 students
  • Tuesday, April 25, 2017 (Kennebec Valley Chapter) - Cony High School, Augusta - 190 students
  • Tuesday, April 25, 2017 (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Gorham High School, Gorham - 200 students
  • Wednesday, April 26, 2017 (Kennebec Valley Chapter) - NEW - Nokomis High School, Newport - 200 students
  • Thursday, April 27, 2017 (Aroostook Chapter) - Aroostook County Fair, Limestone - 425 students
  • Thursday, April 27, 2017 (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Bonny Eagle High School, Standish - 300 students
  • Friday, April 28, 2017 (Maine's credit unions) - Fostering Financial Education in Maine Schools Annual Conference, Augusta Civic Center, Augusta - 175 participants
  • Thursday, May 4, 2017 (Town & Country FCU) - South Portland High School, South Portland - 175 students
  • Friday, May 12, 2017 (York Chapter) - Biddeford High School, Biddeford - 170 students
  • Wednesday, May 17, 2017 (Bangor Chapter) - EMCC, Bangor - 200 students
  • Wednesday, May 17, 2017 (York Chapter) - Thornton Academy, Saco - 410 students
  • Date TBD (Oxford FCU) - Telstar High School, Bethel
  • Date TBD (Oxford FCU) - Oxford Hills Middle School, Norway
  • Various online fairs - 1,614 participants
     

Sample comments from fair participants:

"Living on a budget is about making sacrifices; that is what I really had driven home today." Cony High School Senior, Age 18

"Thank you to the credit unions for organizing these fairs.  My students not only enjoyed participating but learned a lot!-Business Teacher, Bonny Eagle High School

"If I don't do a good job of managing my money, I'm going to have a tough time in life.  Thanks for the chance to see how important it is to learn about doing a good job with your money.Sanford High School Senior, Age 17

"I thought I had it tough but my mom has it much worse.  She has to pay all of the bills and keep track of our finances.  I have a lot of respect for the fact she is able to do it so well.  This fair made me want to be better at helping manage finances.Leavitt High School Senior, Age 19

"Wow!  I really learned a lot today.  When I go off to college in the fall, I feel much more informed about finances."  Fort Fairfield High School Senior, Age 18

"This was a fantastic experience for me.  I am going to work a year or so before I go to college and this gave me a lot to think about.  I feel better prepared today thanks to this activity.  It was well worth it!" - Lake Region High School Senior, Age 18

"I never realized that managing money was so important.  I'm so glad I had a chance to come today.  When I go off to college in a year,  what I learned today will give me a lot more confidence in how to budget." - 
Madawaska High School Junior, Age 16

"I have a much greater understanding for what my parents go through every month, trying to figure out how to pay all of the bills."
 - Oxford Hills High School Senior, Age 17

"This event opened my eyes.  It costs a lot of money to live and this has caused me to re-evaluate my future career plans and to think about the importance of saving money." - Erskine Academy Senior, Age 19

"My respect for my mom in making our finances work has grown from attending this event.  I will now think twice before giving her a hard time about not giving me money everytime I ask for it." - Brewer High School Senior, Age 18

For more information about participating and/or attending one of the Money Management Experience events, email Jon Paradise at the Maine Credit Union League or call him at (207) 773-5671, ext. 273.