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Thrive at 25 gives sophomores insight into life after school

Posted Date: 3/15/24 (7:00 PM)

Students at the banking table during Thrive at 25
Sandy High School sophomore Asher Womack sees a future for himself as a manufacturing engineer, citing the Career Technical Education class he’s taking.
“It’s a breath of fresh air compared to the rest of my classes where rather than sit at a desk I am able to move around and use my hands to make things I can bring home,” he said. “This class is one of my highlights of the school day. I believe it would be a very entertaining thing to do as a full-time job.”
On Wednesday, March 13, Womack got a chance to see what his financial world might look like as a 25-year-old manufacturing engineer as part of Thrive at 25, an event sponsored by the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce that helps all sophomores at SHS understand how their lifestyle choices affect their monthly finances.
Students selected a profession of their choice (with a projected salary) and then visited a series of themed tables, with topics including Housing, Insurance, Groceries, Healthcare and more, all staffed by volunteers from the community, where they could make choices on what their lives may look like at the age of 25. Choices included renting an apartment versus owning a home, having children or not, owning a new or used vehicle and many more.
Students would then make a deduction from their projected salary to gain a better understanding of their potential financial life when they are 25. One other table, labelled “Chance,” added a twist of either an unexpected debt or a potential financial windfall with a raise, a monetary gift or other random occurrence.
“It really surprised me just how much owning a home and paying for groceries costs. With just those two things it had already taken up half of my monthly income,” Womack said. “And that wasn’t even accounting for taxes and insurance.”
Womack added that he wanted to get more information on what exactly he would be taxed on, but in the end, he ended up with a monthly deficit of $2,000 after all the deductions.
“Thrive at 25 really made me realize that if I really want the life I want in 10 years I need to find a good stable job that pays well so I can afford the expenses that my life would require,” he said.
Chloe Clemmer, who selected a hairstylist as her profession, similarly ended up with a deficit for her monthly balance after all the deductions. Previous to Thrive at 25, she expected those bills to be approximately $300 per month, but after the event, she came away with some lifestyle conclusions.
“Do not have children at 25 and rent an apartment with your friends instead of paying full rent by yourself,” Clemmer said, noting she tried to be careful about how much she chose to spend on expenses. “It strengthened my understanding about the next few years of my life and to be smart with life changes.”
Special thanks to Ever Fresh and Tollgate Inn for the refreshments.

Thanks to these community businesses and organizations for volunteering:
American Family Insurance
Barlow Trail Veterinary Clinic
City of Sandy
Clackamas County Bank
Dick Hannah
Embold Credit Union
Ever Fresh
Kiwanis Club of Sandy
Marie Teune, John L. Scott
Mt. Hood Community College
Orchid Health
Portland General Electric
Possibility Squad Powered by Advantage Mortgage
Sandy Action Center
Wegener Travel and Cruise