Thanks to Mary Dyer of the Maine Jump$tart Coalition for sharing this press release with the Maine DOE for publication.
Portland – Four Maine high schools came together to compete in LifeSmarts, the ultimate consumer challenge, at the Unum Corporate Campus in Portland on Friday, March 1. Hosted by the Maine Jump$tart Coalition, this competition-based educational program develops the consumer and marketplace skills of teens. Sanford High School in Sanford, Waynflete School in Portland, Woodland High School in Woodland, and United Technologies Center in Bangor all competed in the state competition.
Waynflete and Sanford capped an exciting day of competition with a championship match. After four rounds, Waynflete School emerged as the champion and will represent Maine at the National LifeSmarts Competition in Atlanta, Ga., April 20 to 23. Waynflete’s trip to nationals is made possible by a generous donation from the Maine Bankers Association and additional support from Maine Jump$tart.
Steve Kautz, a Waynflete math and finance teacher and a 2013 recipient of the Maine Jump$tart Coalition Financial Educator of the Year Award, coached the Waynflete team. James Liu, a senior at Waynflete, served as team captain. Other team members included seniors Abdi Mohamud and Lily Collins and juniors Sam Freedman and Sally Li.
Numerous volunteers from Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts were on hand to serve as competition officials. Dan Hebert, president of the New Hampshire Jump$tart Coalition, and Bill Green, executive producer and Host of Bill Green’s Maine, served as Question Masters.
Mary Dyer, president of the Maine Jump$tart Coalition, explained that while LifeSmarts is currently offered in 42 states, this was the first year it was held in Maine. “Students were quizzed on personal finance, health and safety, the environment, technology, and consumer rights and responsibilities,” Dyer said. “In addition to an exciting competition, this program provides a fun, interactive way for high school students to sharpen their knowledge of personal finance and other life skills throughout the year.”
To qualify for this event, schools competed in a statewide online competition. LifeSmarts is a competition-based program that offers curriculum for middle and high school students, including online resources and practice quizzes.