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Pasadena H.S. Students Get Financial Reality Check Thanks to Shared Resources CU
Thursday, March 13, 2014 6:45 AM

Reality Fair

Feb. 15 was a life changing day for some 36 students at Pasadena High School. Shared Resources CU – a REAL Solutions credit union that also earned the Cornerstone Credit Union League’s Juntos Avanzamos designation in May 2013, hosted a CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair. Students had the opportunity to participate in a hands-on event that guided them through the personal financial management process, including budgeting, saving and investing, in a simulated real-world environment. 

"The reality fair, which is similar to the game of Life, has been a success for Shared Resources CU,” said CEO Stephanie Salazar. “Our vision is ‘being the best at making life changes’ and by hosting the CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair we helped these students prepare for future life events.”

Students who participated in the event chose careers and were given budget sheets with a starting salary.  They went through a simulation of living within their monthly salary while paying for basics such as housing, utilities, transportation, clothing, and food. And some not-so-basics like entertainment and travel. Along the way there are many temptations for additional spending, and students had to learn the important lesson of balancing their wants and needs. After they visited the various booths, students had to balance their budget, and then sit down with a financial counselor to review.

As a REAL Solutions credit union, Shared Resources CU has access to the turn-key financial education reality fair.  REAL Solutions stands for Relevant, Effective, Asset-building, Loyalty-producing Solutions.  Paula Upchurch, director of Cornerstone’s REAL Solutions program, says Cornerstone is able to make the financial education fairs available at no charge to REAL Solutions credit unions thanks to support from Cornerstone, the Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation, Friends of Consumer Freedom and the National Credit Union Foundation.

To learn more about REAL Solutions, please visit

To learn more about Juntos Avanzamos, please visit