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Few organizations can make education in financial literacy fun. But Wharton Women, the largest, paid-member student group on campus, readily took on the challenge.

Embodying the club’s ideals of female empowerment, Wharton Women held their annual Dollar Diva conference on Oct. 23 in Houston Hall to educate local high school girls on financial management.

The club prides itself on programs supporting admissions, alumnae outreach, community service and social activities, and Wharton Women’s annual Dollar Diva conference encompasses all that the club strives to accomplish.

The event hosted students from twelve different Philadelphia-area high schools, technical schools and even an international school, increasing attendance and range of activities of the conferences from years past.

“My first year, there were six schools. This year, we had significantly more schools and girls and have moved to make it more interactive, instead of us just talking at girls about how to do things like budgeting,” Wharton Women Vice President of Philanthropy and Wharton junior Sarah Liu said.

With “America’s Next Top Dollar Diva” as its theme, the event covered topics including financial aid in a college setting, personal expenditures and proper work attire by allowing students to demonstrate these practical skills with the help of Wharton Women members. Activities included providing examples of incorrect resumes, sample situations in which check-writing would be necessary and how exactly to do it, and what experiences and clubs would be beneficial to their finding employment or gaining admission to college.

The event’s organizers strove to help incorporate fun and energy into the challenging activities, awarding students with beads for active participation, interesting ideas and development of pitches in the event — the student with the most beads at the end earned the title of “America’s Next Top Dollar Diva.”

The students, all in 9th to 12th grade, received “Keep Calm and Diva On” T-shirts, as well as goody bags filled with notebooks and pens.

“I’m here because I really like business. I’m having so much fun today,” Franklin Learning Center freshman Julia Grabski said.

Teachers were as eager to partake and praise Wharton Women as the excited students were.

“This is the second year we’ve been invited. The value of being an all-women event, student-to-student, as well as the topics of financial literacy make this a really important event for low-income students,” business teacher Paul Roberts of Murrell Dobbins CTE High School said.

The conference left the young women with a much wider comprehension of the tools they will need as they enter college and the workforce.

“I would say, in general, we just wanted them to know how to handle their money so they can use it responsibly,” Wharton Women Outreach chair and Wharton sophomore Rachel Walter said. “And we wanted to show them they are capable of anything.”

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