Dow & TDECU Sponsored Career Readiness and Budgeting Programs for Clute Students

Dow Chemical, TDECU and Junior Achievement partnered to teach career readiness and basic budgeting skills to over 250 Clute Intermediate eighth grade students. Pictured, from left, are Klarisa McEntire, Pattie Cooper, Tracy Lara, Pamela Nagel, Anne Allstott, Megan Asire, Joyce Chapa, Ed Smolen, Cristina Castro, Janie Shaw-Schwartz, Erin Batig, Shana Reifel, Brittany figaro, Matt Rushing, Austin Hardin, Kevin Meyer, Jackie Faas, Victoria Ruth, Chelsey Reeder and Aubrey Gil.

Dow Chemical, TDECU and Junior Achievement partnered up to teach career readiness and basic budgeting skills to over 250 Clute Intermediate eighth-grade students Wednesday.

Volunteers from Dow Chemical, BASF, Heritage Bank, Junior Service League, TDECU and Woodforest empowered these students to make a connection between what they learn in school and how it can be applied to the real world.

This is the 13th year Dow Chemical and first year TDECU have sponsored the Junior Achievement program for Clute Intermediate students.

Junior Achievement volunteers taught the “JA Economics for Success” program, which provides practical information about personal finance and the importance of identifying education and career goals based on a student’s skills, interests and values. It also demonstrates the economic benefits of staying in school. The JA-in-a-Day format used at Clute Intermediate provides the six topics and activities in a full-day setting.

“JA Economics for Success” correlates with Texas Education Agency’s criteria for middle-grade financial literacy curriculum,” Junior Achievement President Kim Effenberger said. “This is one of my favorite programs, because it really gets students to think about their future, make informed decisions, set goals and explore career paths as well as touching on personal finance and budgeting.

“We want to thank Dow Chemical and TDECU for their continued support in bringing these vital, colorful, hands-on games and activities to the youth of our area.”

As part of the day, each student was randomly given an occupation card, listing the potential gross and net income per month. Each then had to balance their budget, spending a certain amount for housing, clothing, entertainment, transportation and food.

They learned that some occupations come with a higher income than others, but to achieve a higher income, it would often require additional school and training. Other lessons include how insurance and deductibles work, what types of scenarios affect your credit rating and how credit cards and interest work among other hands-on activities.

“It was a great experience. Well organized and prepared,” Dow classroom volunteer Erin Batig said. “The teacher was very supportive and helpful. The kids were very engaged and interested in making good choices. I enjoy teaching this curriculum, and the students learn so much and seem to enjoy the course.”

Clute Intermediate teacher Rachel Seymour thanked volunteers for bringing the event to the students.

“They really sparked some great classroom discussions,” she said.

For information on providing these real-life lessons for your students, children or grandchildren, call Junior Achievement at 979-549-0800.

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