By KARA GAE NEAL
Everyone seems to be watching the financial market these days, including Angel Arrazola, a Union high school senior currently enrolled in Tulsa Tech’s Accounting II class. Earlier this year, Angel was honored as the state winner of the Invest Ed Students Tracking and Researching the Stock Market (STARS) investment education project, and received a $1,000 prize during an awards ceremony at the University of Oklahoma.
The Oklahoma Securities Commission and The University of Oklahoma Outreach sponsor this online portfolio tracking project, which teaches the value of investments to students and how to navigate the dynamic financial market. As a participant, Angel completed a risk assessment, wrote investment goals, researched the market, and tracked online stock transactions. At the end of the project, students completed a detailed report that outlined their findings.
“From this project, I have learned to expect the market to be down in the morning when I wake up and be back up by lunch time,” Angel wrote. “I’ve also learned not to panic when I see a loss rather than a gain in the portfolio, because it could be only
a temporary indicator that could change in a matter of hours.”
However, it didn’t take Angel long to realize that current events and the global economy were going to make this project particularly challenging.
“I considered the market segments that do well in economic downturns, and tried to focus on products that people really need instead of just want,” Angel said. “Of course, because of the economic crisis we are facing, none of the stocks I picked did very well.”
Although the timing of the project seemed to stack the cards against him, Angel still thinks it was great opportunity to learn about finances and investments.
“With finances and investments on Wall Street or with money in general, one should be careful,” Angel said. “If you play with fire, you will get burned, and Invest Ed gives you the oven mitten to protect you from harm.”
After graduation Angel hopes to continue his education in accounting, and possibly work in the field while attending school.
“I really enjoy working with payroll right now,” Angel said, “but I would also like to learn a lot more about accounting, especially tax accounting.”
Tulsa Tech Accounting II instructor Debbie Wiginton is confident that Angel will succeed regardless of which path he chooses. “I’ve really enjoyed having Angel as a student,” Ms. Wiginton said. “He has the ability to examine things in detail and think about the different possibilities or outcomes. Angel is always thinking.”
According to Angel, the Accounting II class with Ms. Wiginton, and the learning environment at Tulsa Tech have definitely been a good investment.
“Ms. Wiginton is always patient, and she continues to help you understand something even if you don’t get it right the first time,” Angel said. “Tech is very different than my high school, and I always look forward to my class.”
If you’re currently looking for industry training, additional career skills, or fantastic opportunities for high school students, Tulsa Tech invites you to visit and begin investing in your education today. For more information, please call 828-5200 or visit online at www.tulsatech.edu.