While attending the NAST Treasury Management Training Symposium in June, Nottingham’s JoAnne Jackson participated in a program geared towards helping students understand the importance of education in their financial futures. The “Get a Life” program was created under the leadership of West Virginia State Treasurer, John Perdue, and highlights the state’s Financial Literacy Initiative.  JoAnne assisted a group of twenty local middle school students through a hands-on process during which they were given job titles, family size, and a monthly income for someone with no post-secondary education.  They then had to work within their budgets to purchase housing, cars, insurance, groceries and other basic necessities.  Along the way, they received a life hiccup (like car trouble) causing them to have to spend additional money and sending most into debt.  During the next phase, students were given the same information and expenses for someone with a post-secondary education.  Again, students received money-costing life hiccups.  During the second phase, however, most students had money left over. This interactive approach illustrating the importance of education and career goals can be used in schools, youth organizations, and local financial literacy programs.  JoAnne enjoyed being a part of the moment when “the light bulb came on”.  She said, “The students were very much engaged…everyone came away with an appreciation of the importance of thinking through financial decisions and their consequences.”  Thanks, JoAnne, for taking time to be a part of this important lesson in finance.