For Immediate Release: April 20, 2018
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Ofirah Yheskel, Ofirah.Yheskel@governor.virginia.gov | Virginia Council on Economic Education, Sarah Hopkins Finley, VCEE Director of Programs, shfinley@vcu.edu, (804) 827-1211

Governor Northam Announces 2018 Governor’s Challenge Champions in Economics and Personal Finance

Three Virginia High School Teams Crowned State Champions at Competition of Economics and Financial Skill

RICHMOND – Governor Ralph Northam today announced the winners of the 2018 Governor’s Challenge in Economics and Personal Finance. More than 2,300 high school students from across the Commonwealth took part in this challenge.

From the online competition, 150 students were invited to participate in the day-long championship on April 20th at Capital One in Richmond.

“I would like to congratulate all of the winners of the 2018 Governor’s Challenge in Economics and Personal Finance,” said Governor Northam. “Developing and honing skills in personal finance and sound economic decision-making are essential to ensuring life-long success in the new Virginia Economy.  These are kinds of high-demand skills that employers the world over are looking for, and the winners we are announcing today prove that the Commonwealth is ready to answer the call.”

The winners include:

David Ricardo Division (Economics)

First Place: Appomattox Regional Governor’s School, Chesterfield; Teacher: Emily Hardesty

Runner Up: Faith Christian Academy, Hurt; Teacher: Tracey Fox


Adam Smith Division (Advanced Economics)

First Place: Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Fairfax County; Teacher: Richard Monteverde

Runner Up: Maggie Walker Governor’s School, Richmond; Teacher: Julius Oreska 


Personal Finance Division

First Place: Nansemond River High School, City of Suffolk; Teacher: Jason Bartholomew

Runner Up: Glen Allen High School, Henrico County; Teacher: Patricia Adams

The Governor’s Challenge is conducted in partnership with the Virginia Council on Economic Education (VCEE), a nonprofit public-private partnership focused on enhancing K-12 economics and financial education.

“Now more than ever, high-quality economic education is a vital part of preparing our students for the demands of the 21st-century workforce,” said Virginia Secretary of Education Atif Qarni. “As a national leader in developing personal finance requirements for our students, we are committed to preparing students to become smarter and more thoughtful consumers.” 

Virginia leads the way in requiring its students to earn a credit in economics and personal finance in order to graduate from high school. VCEE has been a key partner in providing professional development and creative classroom resources to assist teachers who are teaching this course.  The Governor’s Challenge is one of many programs which enhance classroom learning and help build on economic concepts to equip students with skills needed for more informed decision making.

“Congratulations to the winning teams and their teachers and to all of this year’s Governor’s Challenge participants,” Acting Superintendent of Public Instruction Steven M. Constantino said. “The challenge is a great opportunity for students to apply what they have learned and for schools to earn recognition for their success in preparing students to be smart consumers, savers, investors, entrepreneurs and citizens.”

Capital One provided financial support to make the Governor’s Challenge possible.

Visit http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/economics_personal_finance/index.shtml and www.vcee.org to learn more about the Governor’s Challenge and other efforts to promote economic and financial education for Virginia’s students.

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