Education (Elementary and Secondary)

Second Major



Kern, Diane

Advisor Department





education, financial literacy, finances, skills, credit card, banking, student loans, budgeting, life guide, teaching, online, website, financial skills, financial education, budget, scholarships, grants, insurance, renting, bank account, games, teachers, college, credit score, credit report, food budget, car ownership, healthcare

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.



(Secondary Education, History)

Sponsor: Diane Kern (Education)

The Mitochondria is the Powerhouse of the Cell: Life Lessons Never Taught in School

When I was in high school, my friends and I had a running joke about the content we were learning and how it would apply to uses in the real world. The joke was that we didn’t learn anything about credit cards, bank accounts, budgeting, etc., but we do know that the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell. It wasn’t just my school that had this joke; in fact it’s a common meme which can be found easily on the internet or in articles in which high school students list topics they wish they’d learned while in high school. In fact, only seventeen states in the country require students to take a personal finance course, and even then, the students are only learning about the topic, not necessarily how to put it to use (Emanuel, 2016).

This is where my work comes in. A Beginners Guide to Being a Functional Adult is a website I designed to educate students from high school and above on topics in financial literacy which they will need to know for the years ahead. Richard Cordray, Director of the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, conducted research on what most benefits high school students–with four basic results. First, students need to understand where they can go and get more information on their own, outside of school. Second, students need to learn through experience, such as receiving and comparing various credit card offers. Third, there should be an increase in math classes, and fourth, “just-in-time” financial education (Emanuel 2016). The website I created is based on these four tenets. Not only do I provide information to students, but I also provide links to resources and sites for further research and information. My website contains assessments focused on experiential learning and tasks that people can practice in their day to day life. Finally, perhaps the largest component of my website is “just-in-time” education. It contains information that will be useful to young adults as they embark on young adulthood. An 18-year-old student may not need to know about paying a mortgage right away, but they will need to know how to properly manage a credit card. My website is designed as a stepping stone for high school students to educate themselves and find resources they can use to extend their knowledge about life lessons they may not have learned in school.

Check out the website!


Emanuel, Gabrielle. “Not All Financial Education Is Effective. Here Are 4 Ideas That Work.” NPR. NPR, 13 Apr. 2016. Web.