by KAYLA YASUDA
Adulthood is like some form of unspoken phase that teenagers get thrown into. Throughout 12 years of high school, students have learned to: Raise your hand if needed to go to the restroom, turn in homework on time, and always remember to put your full name on the upper right hand corner of your paper. Apparently in college a student can just walk out of class without giving the instructor a reason. Need to go to the bathroom? Just get up and walk out. So therefore if you are planning to go to college then just keep in mind, DO NOT ASK THE INSTRUCTOR. Save yourself the embarrassment. This is not the only thing that is required to be warned about.
How are we as students supposed to know all of these life tips before heading out to the unknown? That is the point, we do not know. If you asked the entire student body to balance a checkbook I am pretty sure a good majority would try to literally balance a checkbook upon their heads. Yes, that is hopeless. Balancing a checkbook, dealing with taxes, and knowing about consumer debt all fit in the category of what is called financial literacy. The Council for Economic Education (CEE) reports that only four states require at least one semester course in personal finance for high school graduation. In other states, like Mississippi, it’s an elective. If more students were taught about financial literacy then more would be aware of college debt. Learning about budgets and income can push you a great amount of steps ahead when it comes down to living on your own.
Sure, mathematical problems stimulate your brain, but do they help you change a tire? I did not think so. As a version of proof I am an 18 year old senior and fail to know the process of changing a tire. If I experience a flat on the side of a road I am screwed. Not to mention putting air in my tires and changing the air filter/oil. About every one of us is bound to deal with car issues throughout our lifetime so might as well learn them now. Also regular maintenance on the car can help save money on your repair bills because everyone knows about that one guy who tries to sucker you into spending even more cash getting your “engine flame fluid” changed (I made that up).
This is a small paragraph about credit because I do not even know what credit is. See? No one has taught me about credit. The times I have heard it in a sentence is, “check your credit score online” or “build your credit up”. Is it like a personal rating? Can you buy a car without having credit?
There are many other life skills to be aware of such as: Insurance, First aid, and even learning to cook. The more I am writing about this, the more I am realizing that I am so not ready to fly off from the mother’s nest. Others would say, “aren’t your parents there to teach you about life skills and financial planning?” A recent study found one third of parents are more comfortable talking with their kids about smoking, drugs, and bullying than about money. So yes, only a third are prepared financially and there could be so much more. Graduating from a gated strict policy high school to a “fend for yourself” college atmosphere can be a lot, and I believe having a class about knowing what is expected of us can make graduating seniors more ambitious and less stupid.