We would like to present to you the Budgeting Class taught by instructor Adrienne Hasse. One of the most critical skills we try to give to our students is helping them understand the importance of planning for the future and abiding by the adage that is as old as time: “A penny saved is a penny earned.”

The students received a lesson about shopping around for certain products and determining what places will consistently have the best deals. Other businesses will have inflated prices because they are able to get away with such costly items under the circumstances. It was explained to the students the reasons why the prices may be higher at a convenience store at a highway rest area is because people are on the go and often need things at the last minute with no other options nearby. Or all the CVS stores and supermarkets are miles away outside someone’s comfort zone. The rest areas know that harried travelers are not going to drive out of their way to save a few dollars. Therefore, it is sensible for the students to purchase all of their toiletries and any other items before going on long trips at local stores where they will get the best deal.

The class concluded with a “field trip” to the College Bookstore. The students went on a scavenger hunt in the Bookstore trying to find products on their list while also recording the prices once they were located. For some of the products that were not found in the bookstore, they were able to look for a compromise if that were preferred. For example, one student was searching for bar soap and found hand sanitizer instead. The students were also encouraged to ask themselves the following questions regarding their shopping habits:

What store has the best value for your items?
Why do you think that store might have had better prices?
Does the size or brand of the item affect the coast? For example, is a larger item always more expensive than a smaller item?
Does the location and convenience of the bookstore tend to make items more or less expensive?
Will this project change where you shop for items? Explain why?

One of the slides that Adrienne prepared showed a comparison of prices of Crest toothpaste from CVS, the Bookstore, and Market 32 (all three businesses are within easy walking distance from

where the students live close to campus.) After a price comparison, it was determined that Market 32 has the best deal for this personal hygiene product.

All of us may benefit from the lessons of Budgeting Class considering that the best way to ensure financial success is to save more money than we spend. None of us have to go to the levels of those in the reality television show “Extreme Cheapskates,” but there are always ways to shave off our expenses and put that saved money into a bank account where it will be secure until needed.

Stay tuned for more class adventures and other exciting things as we inch our way into springlike weather!