TUPELO • Milam Elementary recently won the 16th Annual Capitol Hill Challenge, a stock market game sponsored by SIFMA – the Security Industry/Financial Market Association – and the SIFMA Foundation. The program, supported by the Charles Schwab Foundation, is paying for the top 10 teams to enjoy an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. There, the teams will be recognized at an awards reception on June 11 at the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill.

Milam was the only elementary school in the top 10, posting better results than four high school teams, three middle school teams, one junior and high School team and a vocational technical school.

“Congratulations to all the participants of this year’s Capitol Hill Challenge,” said Kenneth E. Bentsen Jr., SIFMA president and CEO. “For the sixth consecutive year, 100% of Congress participated and SIFMA commends the members of Congress who took the time to visit their local schools and engage with students on financial education.”

This 14-week challenge organizes teams of public middle and high school students by congressional district and state and teaches the importance of saving and investing, while simultaneously promoting a better understanding of our government. Teams invest a hypothetical $100,000 in listed stocks, bonds and mutual funds and learn the value of the capital markets as they work together to diversify across asset classes and maximize the return of their portfolios.

Since the Capitol Hill Challenge began in 2004, the program has reached nearly 125,000 students through some 5,000 matches of U.S. representatives and senators with schools. Public middle and high school students from all 50 states, Guam and Washington, DC, are participating in this year’s Challenge, which focuses on increasing access for Title 1 schools.

“Capitol Hill Challenge provides critical educational experiences to young people across America, emphasizing underserved schools and enabling students who otherwise might not be exposed to the capital markets to gain insights that lead to their success,” said Melanie Mortimer, president of the SIFMA Foundation. “Capitol Hill Challenge students experience the positive compounding effect of understanding from an early age how finance, civics and government touch their lives.”

The competition uses the SIFMA Foundation’s curriculum-based Stock Market Game to help students develop a better understanding of the global economy, become college and career ready, and improve their knowledge of math, economics and business.

Founded in 1977 by academics at Buffalo State, The Stock Market Game has since expanded through a national network of educational nonprofit organizations to reach more than 18 million students.

dennis.seid@journalinc.com Twitter: @dennisseid

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