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Tharptown business students finish second in state

Published 10:04am Wednesday, April 20, 2011

One group of county high school business students showed they have the skills to be competitive in today’s job market after their recent participation in a state finance competition.

Tharptown High School had two different teams competing in the Alabama Personal Finance Challenge, and out of more than 300 teams, the Tharptown Wildcats Team 1 finished second place in the state.

Team members included Pamela Barillas, Kirsten Nolen, Whitney Northington and Mariza Vela.

According to State Treasurer Young Boozer and the Alabama Council on Economic Education, this was the first year the state has hosted the Challenge, which is a series of online tests that quiz students in grades nine through 12 on their knowledge of financial concepts such as income, money management, spending, credit, saving and investing.

Tharptown business teacher Doris Holderby, who also sponsors the schools chapter of Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA), said these students really showed they knew what to do when it comes to financial situations.

“I thought this would be a good competition for my students to participate in because we could all use some help in the financial area,” Holderby said.

“It’s always good to know things like how to balance a checkbook, how to manage debt, how to save your money and how to avoid or manage debt. These will be skills that these students can use for the rest of their lives.”

Holderby said this competition was also better for her students economically.

“Some of these other competitions you can compete in cost money and require fees that some students just can’t afford,” Holderby said.

“A competition like this allows all students who want to participate to do so, and they still get to test their skills against high school students from all over the state so they see how they compare.”

In today’s competitive job market, financial skills are a valuable thing to have and Holderby recognizes the importance of getting her students prepared for life after high school.

“When I teach, I try to bring the lessons out of the book and show the students how it affects them in everyday life,” Holderby said.

“I am so proud of their accomplishments and for their hard work.”

Holderby added the Tharptown Wildcats Team 2 finished 12th in the state as well.

“Out of so many teams, it’s incredible that our students finished so well,” Holderby said.

“Both teams ended up being in the Top 20, and that’s quite an accomplishment.”

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