Juniors at Aberdeen High School got a taste of adult-level finance management this week, as a part of the school’s annual Business Week events.
One of the week’s highlights is Mad City Money, a game in which students receive a fake persona and have to pick and choose their expenses, with the goal to put $100 in the bank after one fictional month.
The students had to compensate for their salary for various occupations like logger or police officer, and then subtract credit card debt, student loans and medical costs, before buying essential goods. The goal for students is to turn a profit of $100 after one month of all their costs and revenue. Each student goes around about 10 different stations, where they decide on how much they spend on supplies such as clothing, food and health care.
Questions like what kind of food or transportation they select, such as buying a car or just a bus pass, all factor in to their final amount. A few volunteers and workers from Great NorthWest Federal Credit Union assisted by running booths that students would go to to select different qualities of things, like child supplies and “Fun Stuff” expenditures such as carnival trips or a baseball game.
Some students said they had fun trying to balance their spending and revenue, while a couple said they found it confusing. They also each get a couple bad or good luck cards, like prize money for winning a beauty pageant or additional costs if you have to buy presents for your brother’s birthday, for example.
“This is actually kind of helpful to me,” said student Hunter Jackson. “I think the trickiest thing is trying to not overspend and get in debt.”