Marlborough High School's Reality Fair creates real-life experience for students

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Marlborough – Marlborough High School (MHS), Marlborough Rotary Club and the Greater Marlborough Regional Chamber of Commerce recently produced the eighth annual financial literacy game, “Reality Fair 2011,” for the seniors of the high school.

The Reality Fair presents a financial learning experience for students in an interactive and fun game format. The fair is held for the senior class each fall to give them a taste of financial reality as they begin preparations for their post-high-school lives.

The Rotary Club provides and recruits most of the volunteers, as well as the publicity for the event.

Marlborough Rotary Club President Elaine McDonald is a fair supporter.

“I have volunteered at the fair,” McDonald said. “It's just an incredible experience – even fun – to see how the kids learn from it. I's really proud that the club started this program in Marlborough.”

The fair presents the students with real business practitioners playing themselves as bankers, auto dealers, insurance agents, etc.

Marlborough Rotary Club Reality Fair Chair Peggie Thorsen said, “We are grateful to the volunteers – this year, 44 individuals from 28 local businesses and organizations – for giving their time and effort to make the fair a success. From my eight years coordinating this project, I have heard time and again how the volunteers enjoy seeing the light of awareness dawn in the eyes of the students.”

The Business Professionals of America (BPA) chapter of MHS provided the behind-the-scenes logistics for the fair.

“Learning to put together an event like the Reality Fair provides the students, not only with a community service project, but also management experience that enhances their business courses,” Jayne Haley, faculty advisor to the BPA, said. “It is also an accomplishment to discuss with colleges and future employers.”

Thorsen added, “We are grateful to Digital Federal Credit Union (DCU), our major sponsor for the sixth year, particularly as they continue to support the fair in the current economy. Also, I want to thank the good auspices of the School/Business Partnership Committee of the Marlborough Regional Chamber of Commerce for their support in the recruitment of volunteers from the beginning – eight years ago.”