Leaders of tomorrow

Stock Market Competition celebration honors students, teachers

CARA MORNINGSTAR/Sun-Gazette Bernard A. Oravec, Williamsport Sun-Gazette publisher, Jon Conklin, Woodlands Bank president and Ryan Monoski, Montgomery Area High School teacher, stand next to the Montoursville Area High School Stock Market Challenge team students, Kyle Rupert, Riley Cox, Carter Smith, Noah Eshenaur and Dylan Ring during the Stock Market Challenge Celebration Luncheon at Pennsylvania College of Technology on Wednesday.

In celebration on the end of the Stock Market Game this year, groups of students who participated across the county gathered to acknowledge their hard work during the Stock Market Challenge celebration luncheon at Pennsylvania College of Technology on Wednesday.

The game is hosted by the Pennsylvania Council on Financial Literacy (PennCFL), Penn College, Williamsport Sun-Gazette, Fairfield Auto Group and Woodlands Bank.

The high school winners were:

• Montgomery Area High School, taught by Ryan Monoski, placed first with a total equity of $308,827.

• Muncy High School, taught by Beth Baker, placed second with a total equity of $209,198.

• Jersey Shore Area High School, taught by Jeffrey Miller, placed third with a total equity of $145,244.

The middle school winners were:

• Muncy Middle School, taught by Beth Baker, placed first with a total equity of $155,789.

• St. John Neumann Academy, taught by James Ledda, placed second with a total equity of $102,263.

• Williamsport Area Middle School, taught by Lisa Walter, placed third with a total of $100,860.

Monoski said he had a great team of students this year.

“I have five awesome kids,” he said. “Sadly, I only have a few days left with them … I teach eighth all the way up to 12th, and four of them have had me for all five years. It’s like my sons are graduating.”

He said the hardest part of his job is saying goodbye when students graduate, but he knew this program helped the students decide their options for life after graduation.

“When you think about what the program does, to me, it helps kids decide what they want to do,” he said.

Baker said her middle school students spent a lot of time on watching their portfolios to see how they were doing. Sometimes things were down, and sometimes they were up.

“I think one of the best things about the game is that … all it takes is some time and patience,” she said. “I think they had a lot of fun, and I hope they end up doing it again next year.”

Bernard A. Oravec, Sun-Gazette publisher, said the paper has published for 217 years.

“”Our mission obviously is to not only inform … but we also spend a lot of time serving as a watchdog of the community,” he said. “We are the only one in Lycoming County.”

He said the idea behind doing that is to keep people in government or other agencies honest, and it comes down to knowing where the community tax dollars are being spent and how. A major purpose of the newspaper is to keep the community informed about where tax dollars go.

“You have an opportunity in the United States … You always have an opportunity to better your status in life, and that starts with investing,” he said. “That’s learning about the stock market, the banks and working with your local financial intuition.”

He said learning about this subject is vital for the students’ future.

“The teachers that I work with are just absolutely incredible,” said Carolyn Shirk, PennCFL vice president. “They change lives every single day.”

She said she knew it was a frustrating job, and teachers were some of the most hard working people she knew. She said it was great for them to learn the process and teach it to their students.

“The respect that I have for your teachers is just so great,” she said. “These teachers give you extra.”

Other participating teams in the game were:

• East Lycoming High School, taught by Brian Machmer.

• Jersey Shore High School, taught by Jeffrey Miller.

• Loyalsock Township High School, taught by Michelle Carpenter.

• Williamsport Area High School, taught by Marianne Wimer.

• Montoursville Area High School, taught by Linda Keiser.