2000 Student Congress on Economic Issues

2000 Results

Participating high schools:
Edison, North, Henry, Roosevelt, South, Southwest and Washburn.


(winning team from each topic):

Topic One
Team Two: Southwest and Henry

Topic Two
Team One: Edison, Henry and South

Topic Three
Team One: Southwest, Edison and Roosevelt

Topic One

What should Yolanda do?

Yolanda is twenty-four years old and a first-year teacher in Minneapolis. She makes $27,300 per year BEFORE TAXES. She needs to figure out transportation. She refuses to consider a used car because her last one was a disaster. Yolanda loves Jeeps. The Jeep Yolanda wants to buy costs $19,000. She should:

TEAM ONE: Lease a new Jeep. South/Roosevelt

TEAM TWO: Buy a new Jeep. Southwest/Henry

TEAM THREE: Use the bus and take a taxi while saving her money to buy a Jeep for cash. Washburn/North/Edison

Topic Two

What should Estevan do?

Estevan has decided to go to a four-year college after high school. Unfortunately, the school he wants to attend is expensive. After scholarships, grant money, help from his parents and money he has saved, he still will need $4,000 per year to finance his education.

The best thing for Estevan to do is:

TEAM ONE: Go to school by taking out a loan. The $16,000 he will need can be paid back after he graduates. The interest rate is 8.25 percent and he will have 10 years to repay. His monthly payment will be $196 a month. Edison/Henry/South

TEAM TWO: Work for two years at a full-time job. He can save $8,000 per year living at home and then he could attend college without taking out a loan. North/Southwest

TEAM THREE: Work part-time while going to school part-time. Estevan figures he could graduate in seven years by using this method.

Note: Be sure to think about the opportunity costs that apply as you argue for your position or against another position.

Topic Three

According to the Congressional Budget Office, from 1977 to 1999 the gap between the rich and poor in America has increased. Four out of the five American households are taking home less of the total income earned in 1999 than in 1977.

The best response to this would be:

TEAM ONE: Raise the minimum wage to at least $11 an hour to allow the working poor to share in more of the country's wealth.

TEAM TWO: Force companies to pay less extravagant salaries to their chief executive officers and more to their employees. No company would be allowed to pay their executives more than ten times the wage of their average employee. For example, if the average employee salary is $25,000 then the CEO cannot make over $250,000.

TEAM THREE: Do nothing. The government should not meddle with the economy. Facts are misleading. Everyone has benefited from our prosperous economy. More people are working, unemployment is very low, and poverty rates are decreasing. North/South

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