“Financial Starting Points” conference this week on campus

Junior Achievement of Mahoning Valley Inc., Youngstown State University’s Williamson College of Business Administration, and the Associated School Employees Credit Union are sponsoring the sixth annual financial life skills conference, “Financial Starting Points.”

The conference for area high school students is Tuesday, April 16,in YSU’s Kilcawley Center. More than 540 area high school students and 22 educators will receive education and hands-on experience in three critical areas of financial literacy, including managing credit, investing in their future and building a personal budget. Betty Jo Licata, dean of the Williamson College of Business Administration, will be the keynote speaker.

During the Life Skills session, each student will be given a salary and will visit different community booths to determine their monthly expenses such as food, housing, transportation, clothing, education and more. Based on their given salaries, they will have to make difficult budget decisions. Many students are surprised by the cost of everyday expenses like rent or owning a vehicle. Add to that tuition, credit cards, student loans and unexpected expenses, students begin to realize how quickly things add up.

“It’s very important to give young adults the opportunity to learn good money management skills,” said Michele Merkel, president of Junior Achievement of Mahoning Valley Inc. “We challenge high school students to think about how they can become financially prepared to rent an apartment, buy a car, attend post-secondary education or whatever their goals may be.”

Junior Achievement presented financial literacy, entrepreneurship and work readiness programs to more than 10,000 students in Mahoning, Trumbull, Ashtabula and Columbiana counties during the 2012-2013 school year. For more information, visit http://warren-youngstown.ja.org.