- 2011 Consumer Bowl
2011 Consumer Bowl
Winslow Township High School Wins Consumer Bowl
Annual event quizzes students on variety of marketplace issues
February 7, 2011 -- The Division of Consumer Protection of the Camden County Health Department hosted the 15th Annual Consumer Bowl at the Camden County Boathouse in Pennsauken on Monday, a contest that gives local high school students the opportunity to sharpen their knowledge of consumer laws/regulations and to familiarize themselves with their rights in the marketplace.
These types of laws regarding fraud, banking and finance rights may not be something the majority of teenagers are well-versed in, but the students that participated in Monday’s fun competition found their niche as they faced multiple rounds of tough questions. Students from Audubon Jr./Sr. High School, Camden County Technical Schools’ Pennsauken Campus, Haddon Township High School, and Winslow Township High School participated. In the end, it was Winslow Township that came out on top. They will advance to a regional competition on April 12, and the winner of that competition will go on to the state level.
“This event is a great form of outreach provided by our Division of Consumer Protection,” said Freeholder Carmen Rodriguez, Division liaison. “It teaches teenagers how to protect themselves as a consumer, which is something that should be taught early in life. Many people aren’t familiar with consumer protection laws and regulations, regardless of their age.”
Freeholder Rodney Greco, who served as a judge alongside County Surrogate Patricia Egan Jones and Clerk Joseph Ripa, agreed.
“From an education standpoint, this is a wonderful opportunity that we provide for these kids because it gives them a solid foundation,” Freeholder Greco said. “What they learn here they’ll take out into the real world and they’ll use that knowledge in real-life situations.”
Using a game show format, students were quizzed by a moderator, county Sheriff Charles Billingham, on materials such as contracts, insurance, banking, store refunds, advertising, repairing of appliances, home furnishings, health spas and vehicle buying/leasing – just to name a few.
“The Jeopardy-style format of the competition is also great because anytime you can make learning fun, you’re making a positive impact on youth,” said Surrogate Jones.
County Clerk Ripa added that he was impressed with the students’ wide knowledge of consumer affairs, including issues relating to mortgages and foreclosures. The other judges agreed, with all three admitting there were some questions that they weren’t familiar with themselves.
“What I’ve learned here really does translate into real life,” said Thuyvan Luu, the 17-year-old captain of the Winslow Township team. “What you learn here will help you protect yourself from fraud and other issues in the future.”
Business courses in high school have become more and more popular and most of the students that participated in the Consumer Bowl became involved through a business course or through the student organization Future Business Leaders of America.
“Teenagers are among the biggest consumers in our state,” said Faith Clement, a state investigator with the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs. “We wish more schools would participate in this event because the value that they take out of it, I can’t even put into words.”