The Union Recorder

Opinion

August 18, 2012

Reality Check offers students no-risk test drive

MILLEDGEVILLE — Navigating the waters of early adulthood often brings its own unique set of challenges. For many, it’s a first foray into managing finances, professional life and personal obligations all on their own without a safety net. That’s why it always helps to be equipped with a solid foundation and strong building blocks to get there. Each year, the Milledgeville-Baldwin County Chamber of Commerce works with local volunteers and area schools to assist in developing ideas for the necessary foundation, helping to provide students with perspective on adulthood and its responsibilities.

Reality Check is put on each year through the Chamber with the help of local volunteers, who give of their own time in an effort to get a message across to local students.

Programs will be held at Baldwin High School, John Milledge Academy and Georgia Military College Prep.

Perhaps now more than any other time in recent history, college and high school graduates face more of an uphill climb as they look to find jobs in a very different and highly competitive job market. These types of realities make it increasingly more important for them to make solid career and financial decisions early on, as their impact is far greater than in years past. For many of these students, it is the first time in their lives where the economic realities of the past three or four years have sunk in.

Reality Check may be a brief exercise, only encompassing one afternoon of their high school careers, but if local students can take anything at all away from the experience, hopefully it will be that the decisions they make now while still in high school really do have an impact on their futures. Also, that they must prepare now for the unexpected by focusing on advancing their education and their career outlooks for the future.

This year’s programs are slated for Wednesday, Sept. 12, at JMA; Tuesday, Sept. 18, at BHS; and Wednesday, Sept. 26, at GMC Prep. Volunteers and sponsors are still needed, and it’s a great way to give back to the community and to local youth.

While the upcoming series of Reality Check programs offer local students a no-risk test drive as a foray into the real world, we hope the brief lessons the program teaches stick with them for the long term.

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