Congratulations to Valerie Ramos, a St. Petersburg Collegiate High School sophomore, who has been awarded a $20,000 scholarship through the H&R Block Budget Challenge — a free, interactive, real-life simulation personal financial education program that rewards students for mastering real-world budgeting and personal finance decision-making. Ramos is one of 66 winners nationwide.
Now in its second year, the H&R Block Budget Challenge works by replicating an adult’s financial life, requiring students to pay virtual bills, save for retirement and repay student loans, all from the safety of a classroom. Students from across the nation who participate in this virtual program are also competing for $3 million in college scholarships and classroom grants.
“We’re very proud Valerie Ramos for being among the top performers in the country in the H&R Block Budget Challenge,” said John Hesting, SPCHS Economics Instructor. “Financial management skills are so crucial — especially for teens right after graduation who are entering the ‘real world.’ We’re thankful for resources like the H&R Block Budget Challenge that help teach our students to take control of their financial future.”
Ramos said, “The H& R Block Budget Challenge has given me opportunities that I never would have imagined happening. This process in my life has reaffirmed the fact that when you work hard and persevere, the end result is one to be proud of.” Last year, 94,000 students participated in the H&R Block Budget Challenge in 5,600 classrooms across all 50 states. In the first year of the program, 133 students received $20,000 scholarships, and one overall winner received a $100,000 scholarship toward his college education.
The H&R Block Budget Challenge is available for free to high school teachers and home school educators. Educators can sign up their classes in one of three simulations will launch in spring 2016 at HRBDS.org. Visit the H&R Block Budget Challenge Newsroom for photos, videos, and more information about the program at www.HRBDS.org.