Friday, July 13, 2018

Jordan Small Middle School student places first for Maine in SIFMA Foundation’s InvestWrite® essay competition by Elizabeth Richards

Taylor Juhase
When 12-year-old Taylor Juhase moved from Connecticut to Maine, she transitioned from private school to public school for the first time. And it was at Jordan Small Middle School in Raymond that she discovered the world of investing, through their participation in the SIFMA Foundation’s Stock Market Game™. Juhase then participated in the InvestWrite® essay competition, emerging as the first-place winner for the state of Maine.

The competition involved choosing a nonprofit organization and detailing, in writing an investment plan designed specifically for that organization. Juhase chose Save the Children. In her essay, she wrote “I chose Save the Children because I have a little brother and I would do anything to keep him safe…Save the Children believes every child deserves a future.”

Juhase said she didn’t know anything about investing before participating in the Stock Market Game™ in Jack Fitch’s math class. While she said she still doesn’t understand all of the nuances, she gained enough understanding to impress the panel of judges. what they have learned in the Stock Market Game™ is what the competition is all about, according to a press release from the SIFMA Foundation. “InvestWrite® enables students to develop the personal financial savvy needed to make practical financial decision with confidence and gain a deeper understanding of economic opportunities, consequences, and benefits,” the press release read. “Students consider real-world events and news, conduct research online, and develop investment recommendations. They work in groups during The Stock Market Game program and then write their InvestWrite® essays individually to reflect their critical thinking, analysis and creative talents.”

Juhase said she found out that she won while at school. “It was exciting, but at the same time I was a little sad, because my other friend was sad that she didn’t win,” she said. This compassion that she has for others came through in her essay as well. “I am fortunate enough to have everything I need to have a good and healthy life. My family has food, water, money and a roof over our heads. I can’t even imagine a family in the world starving, having nothing at all to protect children from harm,” she wrote.

Writing about investing was challenging, Juhase said, because she didn’t know much about it prior to this experience. She researched nonprofits online, as well as information on bonds and mutual funds. Now, she said, she thinks the process is really fun. “You really get to communicate and talk about the stocks,” she said. The essay took a couple of weeks to complete, Juhase said. They had time in math class to work on it, and she received support from her teacher and some friends, she said.

All of the attention has been a little overwhelming, Juhase said, since she typically isn’t much of an attention seeker. She added that when she moved to Raymond she felt really welcomed. Her grandmother, Patricia Juhase, said she has found a nice group of friends with whom she has bonded.

Juhase and Fitch were honored at a surprise event at the school in early March. Representatives of the SIFMA Foundation and other special guests were in attendance. Juhase was awarded a medal, a trophy, a t-shirt, flowers and a $100 gift card said Patricia, who travelled from Connecticut to attend the event.
“When I read her essay, I was truly amazed at what she wrote, for a 12-year-old,” Patricia said. “We’re very proud of her.”
The following is Taylor Juhase’s winning essay:

Save the Children

Did you know that Save The Children helps children in 120 countries including the U.S. I chose-Save The Children because I have a little brother and I would do anything to keep him safe. I could never imagine him growing up to a terrible future or life. Save The Children believes every child deserves a future. In the U.S. and around the world, they give children a healthy start in life, and. the opportunity to learn and be protected from harm. I want to help kids my age have a good life that they deserve. This means that they need clean water and healthy food to grow to be healthy and strong. No matter what the challenge is, they always put children first in everything they do. They do everything from child protection to hunger and livelihoods. No one wants a child to be not well treated or have a horrible life.

The day I was hired by this non-profit organization I told the people in charge that in my investment strategy diversification was important because they need to protect all of their money. I diversified their funds into mutual funds which are companies that take money from investors and invest the money in securities such as stocks, bonds, and also short-term debts. The combined holdings of mutual funds. are known as portfolios. Investors buy shares in mutual funds. Each share represents an investor's part of ownership in the fund and the income generated. Bonds are very similar to loans. 

When you invest in a bond you let a company borrow your money. According to U.S. News and World Report, DFA Five-Year Global Fixed Portfolio (DFGBX) and Franklin Income Fund are good mutual funds they can invest in. The third place I invested their money was in high quality growth stocks in all the different sectors of the market to keep risk to a minimum. I believe these strategies keep Save The Children viable for years to come. am fortunate enough to have everything I need to have a good and healthy life. My family has food, water, money and a roof over our heads. I can't even imagine a family in the world starving, having nothing at all to protect children from harm. I think about how good of an education I get and a lot of children around the world cannot go to school. In 2012 Save The Children launched the Every Beat Matters campaign, giving Americans a way to help millions of children survive. Also, in 2012 the Syrian Civil War killed thousands of children, and many more were harmed, traumatized, or forced to leave their homes. Save The Children was keeping the children safe in very dangerous conditions.

Save The Children provided the children with the basics that they needed. In 2011 a terrible drought struck the horn of Africa. Save The Children helped about 942,000 children providing them with child friendly spaces, education and counseling services, reuniting children with their families and providing foster families if needed.

Making investment strategies will ensure that Save The Children will always have the finances to be successful and will be able to save more kids in the future.

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