Students get hands-on budgeting lesson with Get a Life program

OAK HILL, WV (WOAY) – At Oak Hill Middle School, students spent their morning learning the basics of personal finance and budgeting.

“The students are given an identity ten years out of high school,” said program coordinator Pat Ramsburg. “They have a family to support, They have a job they can get in West Virginia with a high school diploma. Their task is to go all the stations and buy basic goods and services for a month.”

The 8th-graders quickly learn that sometimes, that’s much easier said than done. Trying to support a family of three on a $21,000 salary might take more budgeting than the students expected. Several students were surprised to learn how much certain necessities would cost. Luckily, the students could trade in their high-school-diploma jobs for a higher paying career for the second round.

“[They get a] new job, new family, and the money is twice as much because they have certifications beyond high school,” Ramsburg said.

Watch the video for the full story.

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Kassie Simmons
Kassie Simmons joined the team in January 2019 as a weekend journalist. She graduated from Virginia Tech in just two and a half years with a BA in multimedia journalism. During her short time at Virginia Tech, she served as the editor for the university’s chapter of The Tab. Kassie was named the top reporter for The Tab at Virginia Tech on multiple occasions and made the list for the top 30 reporters for The Tab in the U.S. She also studied theater performance and minored in creative writing. Before coming to WOAY, Kassie interned at WSLS in Roanoke and the Tidewater Review in her hometown of West Point, Va. She has loved following breaking news since her childhood and has a passion for delivering the stories people care most about. Kassie is excited to be working in Southern West Virginia and looks forward to all the adventures ahead of her. You can follow her on Twitter at @KassieLSimmons and like her page on Facebook. If you have a story you think she should check out, send her an email at