From left, D.J. Grimes of Community Bank; Smithville students Jeremy Presley and Taylor Hughey; teacher Maggie Edwards; and student Lilyan Madrid are pictured after the students were awarded cash prizes from the bank for placing first in the Stock Market Game.

SMITHVILLE- A trio of Smithville High School students who go by the name of “Team Hoss” won top honors for the class in the Stock Market Game, an online simulation of the global capital markets that engages students grades 4-12 in the world of economics, investing and personal finance and that has prepared millions of students for financially independent futures.

Jeremy Presley, Taylor Hughey and Lilyan Madrid each were awarded prizes of $50 cash each for earning over $7000 in about six weeks by investing $100,000 in virtual money with a biochemical family as part of the game.

Algebra instructor Maggie Edwards branched out into studying investing with her students with help from friends at Community Bank.

“My students have been working on a stock market project where they were given $100,000 to invest,” Edwards said. “They had to do all their own research and investigate different stocks and mutual funds. Community Bank sponsored the event and sent representatives to visit my classes to advise them.”

The 42 Smithville students competed in the game with over 50 other groups and made first place.

The game ended on December 13 and representative D. J. Grimes from Community bank visited the classes to give a pizza party and present Presley, Hughey and Madrid with their cash prizes.

Presley was thankful for Grimes’ coaching to help him earn his share in the virtual investment exercise. None of the winners had immediate plans for their windfalls beyond looking for the best way to save it.

“I’m thinking about maybe concert tickets or Christmas gifts other than saving it,” Madrid said.

Edwards remarked that it was a challenge to get the students to invest all of the $100,000 allotted to them.

“We had to push them to spend it,” she said. “They got good life lessons from it.”

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