Alta Loma High School students take a “Bite of Reality”

ONTARIO, CA (November 6, 2018) — Seniors from Alta Loma High School learned just how challenging it can be to make financial decisions as an adult, courtesy of an interactive financial education simulation held on campus recently.

The Oct. 19 “Bite of Reality” event was hosted by Chaffey Federal Credit Union. The program is offered by the Richard Myles Johnson (RMJ) Foundation, the state foundation for credit unions in California and Nevada, and it aims to teach young people the basics of finance by having them take a “real world” test drive complete with a job, money, and the freedom to make their own financial decisions.

Via the Bite of Reality app, each of the roughly 470 seniors at the school received a persona complete with occupation, salary, spouse and family, student loan debt, credit card debt, and medical insurance payments. With the app also providing them with a personalized monthly income, each student went “shopping” for items such as housing, transportation, food, clothing, household necessities, and daycare.

Throughout the event, the students dealt with pushy salespeople portrayed by volunteers from Chaffey FCU and various community partners. And when some overspent, those staffing the “credit union” station provided much-needed assistance.

Wade Jester, 18, said he learned that some things are really expensive, such as children. What was an eye-opener for him? “Dining out is a lot of money.”

Fiona Hotchkiss, 18, found the experience very helpful, saying she learned “to be conservative with how I spend my money. I need food more than I need really expensive things.”

She said that the program is one that high school students should go through. “It’s fun and it’s a good way to see how expensive life can be,” Fiona added.

This taste of reality is exactly what RMJ Foundation Executive Director Tena Lozano hopes students would take away from the Bite of Reality events.

“It’s great to provide a no-risk environment like this so that when these young people face these same situations later in life, they can make good financial choices,” she said.

Alta Loma High School Principal Jason Kaylor agreed. “This is essential for high schools kids. Part of our goal is to prepare kids for life, and one of those ways is personal budgeting. Bite of Reality offers a slice of that reality. It is an awesome opportunity for kids.”

Chaffey Federal Credit Union CEO Kevin Posey speaks with Alta Loma High School senior Wade Jester at the “credit union” table about the financial choices Wade made during Bite of Reality, a financial reality program held on campus recently. The event was hosted by Chaffey FCU. The Bite of Reality program is offered by the Richard Myles Johnson Foundation, the state foundation for credit unions in California and Nevada. It is designed to teach the basics of money management.

About Richard Myles Johnson Foundation

Founded in 1958, the RMJ Foundation is dedicated to supporting credit union efforts in spreading the financial literacy message to young people. The Foundation offers the Bite of Reality program, a hands-on simulation program that teaches the basics of finances to teenagers. It is funded through donations from credit unions, League chapters, corporations providing credit union services, and individuals. More information about the Foundation is available at its website at   

About Chaffey Federal Credit Union

Chaffey Federal Credit Union is a nonprofit financial institution serving members in the San Gabriel Valley and Inland Empire for 54 years. Chaffey FCU is a full-service financial institution that offers a full suite of lending and savings products and financial education for members and the community.


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