As part of our continuing efforts to prepare seniors for college and beyond, Brook Hill recently partnered with Kelly Community Federal Credit Union to sponsor a “Reality Fair” for our Brook Hill seniors.


The Reality Fair is a financial literacy program designed to familiarize students with personal money management skills. Seniors first met with Mrs. Rae Oakes and learned about ways to earn, save, and spend money wisely. Through our Senior Seminar class, Mrs. Oakes provided direct instruction and interactive activities designed to simulate the “reality” of personal and family finance. This included discussion about budgeting tools and the importance of establishing and keeping a good credit score.

The Reality Fair culminated with a hands-on paper and pencil walkthrough for students. Each student submitted their chosen future career and then began with an average starting salary for that field. Using their projected monthly income they had to make choices for housing, auto, utilities, insurance, food, etc. Each booth at the fair presented “necessities” and “luxuries” with the opportunity for students to filter through how they would spend their money. Before balancing their money, each student also had to spin the “wheel of reality” where “life happened” to them. For some students, this meant receiving a bonus at work, and for others, it meant car trouble or a laptop breaking. As educators and those investing in our students, our hope is to provide them with the skills they need in order to be resilient, wise, and informed.

When all of their figures were down on paper students sat with Credit Counselors to see if their paychecks were going to cover their chosen lifestyles.

The desired result of the Reality Fair is to give our young adults the tools they need to enter into the workforce after college—to find out more about how their career and lifestyle choices are affected by economic realities, and to provide them with the opportunity to see where they might have room to keep learning and growing as they approach life beyond Brook Hill.

We’re so grateful for the opportunity to partner with Kelly Community Federal Credit Union in providing this formative hands-on training and look forward to continuing the conversation with our students throughout the remainder of this year!