Schools around the nation compete in an annual personal finance competition. It starts out with regional tournaments before reaching the state and national levels. Most of the same schools compete each year, with one school reaching the top spot several years in a row, earning a winning streak.
Maryland Personal Finance Challenge Competition
Each year, the Maryland Council on Economic Education hosts a personal finance challenge. Twenty-nine different schools compete at locations like the M&T Bank Stadium. Every student in the winning class earns a prize of $250 and gets to move on to the national tournament. It takes a full four hours for the match.
Howard County’s Application and Research Lab
Four years in a row, Howard County’s Application and Research Lab took home the state title. They got to continue to the U.S. tournament with schools across the nation. All members of the Finance I class that won, along with their instructor, Maddy Halbach, took home a $250 prize.
During the course each of the teams get quizzed on savings, investments, money management, credit, and spending. All personal finance-related topics get included in the material. Middle school students complete two rounds of short written quizzes, while high school students participated in three rounds.
The Goal of the Competition
Maryland and many other states across the U.S. have countless jobs that require a credit check. Employers want to know their employees are financially responsible, especially if they begin a finance-related career. Preparing students with financial information is the primary goal, ensuring middle and high schoolers alike know just how important spending, saving, credit, and other related topics are in everyday life.
Preparing for Nationals
Nationals get held each year around the month of May. They take place in Missouri. The winning students from the Maryland competition, plus the other state tournaments around the U.S., are now preparing for the upcoming match. All participants get to show off their financial literacy skills and prove just how much they know about finances.
~Here’s to Your Financial Health!