Earlier this month, Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows member Megan Wurm was selected as National Money Matters Ambassador for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. She was selected among a national candidate pool to be the national face of a program that teaches thousands of teens about money management to hone skills that will last a lifetime.
During her tenure as national ambassador, Megan will use her platform to continue to pursue an agenda to teach financial responsibility, both in northern Nevada – Megan is a Sparks resident and student at Bishop Manogue High School – and nationally. Last week, she traveled to Atlanta, Washington D.C. and New York to kick off her duties. Below are excerpts of journals kept by Megan during the trip.
Tuesday, April 12- Atlanta
It’s only the first day of my trip, and already I’m exhausted! We flew into Atlanta last night at 10 and went to bed around midnight, only to wake up at 6 (which, mind you, was 3 Reno time) to go to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America office.
Though I am exhausted, I met so many amazing people! Adam, of course, our tour guide; Judy, who introduced me to some of the national staff and greeted me with a huge hug, and BeBe, who asked me about my opinion and suggestions for improving the Money Matters program, which I really appreciated.
These are just a few of the dozens of people I met, all of whom greeted me warmly and welcomed me with open arms. Everyone in that office is so enthusiastic about their jobs and what they do. The energy there was so high! It is that energy, I suspect, that has worn me out. If this is what my entire time as Money Matters Ambassador is going to be like, I suspect that I will be very tired all the time, but I will always have a blast.
Wednesday, April 13 – Washington, DC
I’m back on the road again! This morning we flew into DC, getting in at 9 a.m. local time. We grabbed breakfast at Gregory’s hotel, then Brittina (area director at the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows and Megan’s travel companion) and I let him rest for a bit as we went out to explore the city – or at least Georgetown, anyway.
We went to Georgetown Cupcake, which is, in my opinion, the best cupcake shop ever, and then shopped a little bit before driving out to Virginia to meet with one of Brittina’s friends. Then we raced back to the city to meet Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.), who is third in line for the presidency and also just happens to be one of my state senators.
Gregory joined up with us at that point, along with Kevin, head of government relations for BGCA, and the president of the BGCA, Roxanne. That just happened to be a day when major budget decisions were being made, so when we finally got to meet with Sen. Reid he was exhausted. I was still very honored to even be given the chance to meet him, and talk with him a little bit.
Later, we went to a dinner where I sat between Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz and Roxanne, two incredibly powerful women. It was amazing to think that they knew my name, they knew who I was. Mrs. Pomerantz was presented with an award, and during her speech she rapped! That was another thing that completely caught me off guard – someone so important getting up in from of hundreds of people and rapping!
Anyway, after dinner Brittina and I got on an Amtrak train to New York, which is where I am now. We are scheduled to arrive at 2 a.m., only to get up four hours later – I definitely see caffeine in my future. Wish me luck!
Thursday, April 14 – New York
When I woke up this morning, the first thing I thought was ‘Ugh- time to get up already?’ Then I remembered what I was doing today – going to the floor of the New York Stock Exchange – and what I was supposed to be doing that day – getting my wisdom teeth removed.
I realized that no matter how early in the morning it was, and how little sleep I got, being in New York City for anything was better than being at home with an aching mouth, confined to my couch for days. With that in mind, I made myself forget how tired I was and got ready for the day.
We were staying a few blocks away from the New York Stock Exchange (which is, I soon learned, abbreviated NYSE), so we walked there from our hotel with the other Money Matters scholarship winners. They were all very nice, amazing people, who I could tell worked hard and had incredible goals they wanted to reach. We all had breakfast where we met, among other people, an eighth-grader with his own business and a senior in high school, like us, who was planning on starting his own business. After breakfast we all went down to the floor to film the documentary part. That mini-field trip alone made me interested in economics and business. The trip was short, but it was long enough to give me a taste of the Exchange and make me excited to take an economics class in college so I can learn more.
After the virtual filed trip, we had lunch, then headed back up to the floor to do the second (live!) part of the documentary.
I had the opportunity to interview Courtney Leimkuhler, who works for the company that owns the NYSE, Euronext. After that, a few other students from other organizations and myself got to interview the CEO of the NYSE – no pressure right? I was so nervous! The only way I could console myself was to remember that kids were the ones watching the broadcast – if I messed up, they would probably think I was doing it on purpose to be silly, and not care.
I ended up getting through the rest of the video unscathed. With that, we took a picture with the infamous bull that is on Wall Street, and we also took a picture with a guy dressed up In a Spongebob costume for no discernible reason. We then trudged back to the hotel – I mean that literally, by the way, because my shoes were killing my feet! I am now resting in my hotel room before Brittina, Adam and I go back out.
I have no more official obligations as money Matters Ambassador for the week. For the next 30 hours or so, I just get to hang out in New York and enjoy the city! This whole trip still seems surreal to me…I still can’t believe that I have been blessed with this incredible opportunity, and I am so grateful for all of my previous experiences and all of the ones that I know are ahead of me. I am hoping that this incredible journey is just the beginning.
On that note, I’m going to wrap up this entry. My feet and I are rested and replenished, and the city is calling!
Great job Megan! We are proud of your accomplishments and proud to have you representing the Club so well.
To view the Discovery Channel NYSE-tour field trip special, click HERE.