Credit union holds financial fair for local students

ISHPEMING — TruNorth Federal Credit Union held a fair for high school students earlier today.

TruNorth Federal Credit Union held their inaugural Financial Reality Fair at the Ishpeming High School gymnasium.

The fair gave Juniors and Seniors from Negaunee, Ishpeming, and Westwood a taste of financial responsibility after high school.

“The students all chose a career, they researched what their starting salary would be, we calculated what their monthly take home pay would be off of that salary, gave them a credit score, and now they have to eleven booths to pay for what it takes to live,” said TruNorth Federal Credit Union Member Advocate Shae Kangas, “so they have to find somewhere to live, they have to find a car, they have to buy food, clothing, if they want to get their hair cut, they have to find a way to pay for it.”

TruNorth worked with several volunteers from local businesses. Their contribution helped make it an enjoyable time for the students.

“The kids are having a blast,” said Border Grill Owner Dan Torres, “it’s clearly not something that they’re not feeling that they’re forced into. They’re enjoying it, and I’m seeing a bunch of pretty amazing kids.”

“Given that in high school, we don’t really learn how to budget or how to get ready for taxes and everything,” said Ishpeming High School Senior Rachael Loman, “so it’s really nice to have this before we go to college especially speaking as a senior; getting ready and prepared for financial issues and having to pay for a car and a house and your own food. I think it’s really cool.”

And while the environment was fun and cheerful, a valuable lesson was learned by the students.

“It’s all in pursuit of financial literacy for young people in our community,” added Kangas, “what’s good for the young people that will be spending their money here is good for all of us so anything that helps educate the youth about credit cards, about credit scores, about how to balance their budget is great for our community.”

“I babysit to make money,” added Loman, “I don’t have a legitimate job that I go to every day so I have a problem, like say going often with my friends and shopping at the mall. You spend money fast. This makes you realize that you have to budget out. You have to have money for food, you have to have money for your house and your car or you’re going to lose it and your credit score goes down and that just doesn’t help anything.”
TruNorth Member Advocate Shae Kangas added that roughly 225 students attended the Financial Reality Fair
They plan to make it an annual event.

About the Author

Caleb Scanlon
Caleb M. Scanlon is a reporter for ABC 10 / CW 5 and joined the news team in 2015. He grew up in Negaunee, where he attended Negaunee High School. Caleb completed his Bachelor's degree in Media Production and New Technologies from Northern Michigan University with a minor in Communication Studies. Caleb interned with ABC 10 / CW 5 in the fall of 2014. During his free time, Caleb enjoys spending time with his wife Samantha, his kids Fred and Lucy, and his cats Scotty, Remus, and Fitzgerald. Caleb plays a multitude of musical instruments and performs in a band called Concord Through Keys. When there isn't snow on the ground, Caleb can often be found at Al-Quaal playing disc golf.