Teams of Nebraska high school students will compete April 20 in Lincoln, Omaha, and Kearney in the regional competition of the Personal Finance Challenge, sponsored by the Nebraska Council on Economic Education.
The statewide winner will be announced at the conclusion of the competition on April 20. The winner will go on to compete in the National Personal Finance Challenge, which will take place May 11 at the College of Business on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus. Last year’s statewide winner, Arthur County High School, went on to take third place in the national competition.
For the sixth year, the Nebraska Educational Savings Trust (NEST 529) will award $14,000 in NEST 529 college savings accounts to members of the winning teams. Each member of the first-place team will receive a $2,000 contribution to a NEST 529 account. Each members of the second-place team will receive a $1,000 NEST 529 account, and each member of the third-place team will receive a $500 NEST 529 account. Teachers of the winning teams will each receive an iPad tablet from NEST. Four students usually form a team.
“Congratulations to all the students who will be competing on April 20 and their teachers. We look forward to their presentations and to selecting the next statewide winner. We also want to thank all the students and teachers across the state who took part in this year’s Finance Challenge. In all, 281 teams competed in the high school division,” said Jennifer Davidson, president of the Nebraska Council on Economic Education.
Davidson said teams were selected to take part in the regional competition based on their scores on online testing. Students took individual online tests in their home schools, and their scores were used to create a team score. The online test focused on money management, credit, spending, savings, and investing.
The top five teams from each region were invited to this week’s competition in Lincoln, Omaha, and Kearney, she said. At the regional competition sites, students will apply personal finance concepts to hypothetical family scenarios and develop financial plans based on the families’ goals. Each team will present its plan to a panel of judges.
A first-place winner will be chosen at each of the three regional sites, and then each first-place team’s online test score will be used to determine first-, second-, and third-place winners statewide.
Schools competing in the April 20 regional competition and their teachers are as follows:
Lincoln - Lincoln Southeast High School, three teams, Lindsay Tillinghast; Norris High School, two teams, Justin McGill.
Omaha - Millard South High School, Seth Woodke; Omaha Northwest Magnet High School, two teams, Susan Dimmitt; Pierce High School, Greg Warneke; Clearwater High School, Amy Selting.
Kearney - Alliance High School, two teams, Brandy Stark; Hay Springs High School, Melissa Lein; Sutherland High School, Shannon Staggs; Keya Paha County High School, Alana Cardinal and Danielle Thornton.
About NEST 529
The Nebraska Educational Savings Trust (NEST 529) is a tax-advantaged 529 college savings plan and provides four plans to help make saving for college simple and affordable: NEST Direct College Savings Plan, the NEST Advisor College Savings Plan, the TD Ameritrade 529 College Savings Plan, and the State Farm College Savings Plan. The Nebraska State Treasurer serves as Program Trustee. First National Bank of Omaha serves as Program Manager, and all investments are approved by the Nebraska Investment Council. Families nationwide are saving for college using Nebraska’s 529 College Savings Plans, which have more than 254,000 accounts, including 80,000 in Nebraska. Visit NEST529.com and treasurer.nebraska.gov for more information.
About Nebraska Council on Economic Education
The Nebraska Council on Economic Education and its five centers are focused on directly educating Nebraska’s students and providing professional development for K-12 teachers to advance economic and financial literacy. The Nebraska Council on Economic Education is a 501(c)3 non-profit, housed at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, College of Business Administration. Visit nebraskacouncil.unl.edu for more information.