Freshman Luisa Pan’s college account got a big boost from a $20,000 scholarship from H&R Block for winning the H&R Block Budget Challenge! Two other Harker students have won this award: Roma Gandhi, grade 10, in 2017 and Rithvik Panchapakesan, grade 11, in 2016. Each semester, five awards are given out nationwide. H&R Block sent a representative to Harker today to award the check to Pan.
The most challenging aspect of the contest was recovering from unexpected events, said Pan. “I had to use overdraft protection in order to avoid a nonsufficient funds fee and risk losing even more.”
She did have to make special time to manage the challenge. “I managed to reserve a short period of time every day before going to sleep to check that all my checks had gone through, and I was following my budget plan,” she said. “Over the weekends, I had more time to properly plan my budget for the following week.
“I still have more to learn in terms of financial literacy and budgeting. I would most likely want to continue expanding my budgeting and decision-making skills.
“The challenge was a fun experience in all, and I don’t regret playing it. I think it’s a great way to teach students about finance and saving for the future before college. For me, I expect the challenge will help me to properly manage my money in college and beyond.”
In its congratulatory letter, H&R Block noted Pan “scored above thousands of students who participated in the online simulation.”