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 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.. 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.
Scheduling for fairs for the 2017/18 school year is underway. Below is a list of those already scheduled for the upcoming year.
2017/18 Fairs (NOTE: Not all fairs in person, or online are included in this listing. More will be added throughout the year):
- Wednesday, October 3, 2017 (Cumberland County - Alex Ferguson) - Portland High School, Portland - 200 students
- Wednesday, October 11, 2017 (Various CUs) - NEW - Deering High School, Portland - 225 students
- Wednesday, October 11, 2017 (Kennebec Valley Chapter) - Maranacook High School, Readfield - 150 students
- Wednesday, October 11, 2017 (Town & Country FCU) - Scarborough High School, Scarborough - 275 students
- Tuesday, October 17, 2017 (Kennebec Valley Chapter) - NEW - Mt. View High School, Thorndike - 200 students
- Wednesday, November 15 (Jeannette G. Morin Chapter) - Wiscasset High School, Wiscasset
- Wednesday, November 21 (York Chapter) - NEW - Massabesic High School, Waterboro
- Thursday, March 1, 2018 (Oxford FCU) - Mountain Valley High School, Rumford
- Wednesday, March 28, 2018 (Norm Nolette Chapter with assistance from Jeannette G. Morin Chapter) - Lewiston
- Wednesday, March 28, 2018 (Oxford FCU) - Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, South Paris
- Tuesday, April 10, 2018 (Kennebec Valley Chapter) - Cony High School, Augusta
- Tuesday, April 10, 2018 (Oxford FCU) - Dirigo High School, Dixfield
- Wednesday, April 11, 2018 (Northern Penobscot Chapter) - Lee Academy, Lee
- Wednesday, April 11, 2018 (Bangor Chapter) - Washington County Fair, Washington Academy, Machias
- Friday, May 11, 2018 (Maine CU League, CUs) - Fostering Financial Literacy Conference, Augusta
- Tuesday, May 22, 2018 (Aroostook Chapter) - Aroostook County Fair, Loring Job Corps, Limestone
- Date TBD (York Chapter) - Thornton Academy, Saco
- Date TBD (York Chapter) - Sanford High School, Sanford
- Date TBD (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Bonny Eagle High School, Standish
- Date TBD (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Falmouth High School, Falmouth
- Date TBD (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Sacopee Valley High School, Hiram
- Date TBD (Alex Ferguson Chapter) - Gorham High School, Gorham
- Date TBD (Town & Country FCU) - South Portland High School, South Portland
- Date TBD (Oxford FCU) - Telstar High School, Bethel
Many more yet to be scheduled.
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.