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BIAW Informs Yelm High School Students about the Reality of the Trades
October 4, 2019

BIAW staff members Workforce Development Manager Al Audette, Membership Manager Karen Hall and Graphic Designer Brenda Kwieciak helped over 60 students at the Yelm High School Reality Fair on Tuesday, Oct. 1.

The reality fair is an event for junior and senior students to gain a better understanding of post-graduation costs. Each student received a paper stating a job, salary, and any student or credit card debt. Then the students had to go around to different tables and buy housing, cell phone plans, food, transportation and other costs they will face once living alone. The whole point of the event was to show students the importance of budgeting and how their decisions affect them further down in life. Most students needed to backtrack and change their decisions on the car they bought or the cell phone plan because it was not sustainable for them to be living in debt.

Yelm Community Schools Career and Technical Education Director Teri Pablo explained to the students about the many different career choices available to them instead of going right to a four-year college with extensive loans. Trade schools, apprenticeships, and job shadowing have significantly less debt if any at all and the jobs pay well. Yelm High School is helping end the labor shortage by informing students about the benefits of the trades and fighting the stigma that everyone needs to go to a four-year university.

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