The National Youth Involvement Board (NYIB) recognized the New Jersey Credit Union Financial Reality Fairs Program for the most students reached by a team during the past year, the New Jersey Credit Union League (NJCUL) announced.
Kyle Jaremko, marketing manager at Princeton (N.J.) FCU and member of the NJCUL’s Youth Involvement Board (YIB) accepted the award on the state's behalf. Jaremko served as New Jersey's state delegate with the NYIB.
The award honors the New Jersey Credit Union Foundation, NJCUL, and the New Jersey credit unions that collaborated to sponsor and host a record number 16 reality fairs in New Jersey this past school year that reached over 2,800 students throughout the state. The program has reached over 11,500 students through 86 Fairs to date.
“The reality fair program here in New Jersey is the ‘people helping people’ philosophy in action,” said Foundation Chairman Michael Hou. “The New Jersey Credit Union Foundation is proud to support credit unions across the state as they bring this important, informative, hands-on program to schools across the state. The board has made the program more affordable for credit unions and have also made more grant funds available to expand the opportunities for this program to grow year-over-year. We expect that it will continue to reach more schools and more students in the years to come.”
A reality fair is an interactive financial literacy tool for high school students. The concept is an opportunity for students to experience some of the financial challenges they will face when they start life on their own. It’s a hands-on experience in which students identify their career choice and starting salaries then complete a budget sheet requiring them to live within their monthly salary while paying for basics such as housing, utilities, transportation, clothing, and food. Additional expenditures such as entertainment and travel are factored in as well.