PwC and KWHS Bring their Unique Brand of Business and Finance Education to Chicago

Midwest high school teachers from 15 different states gather at the University of Chicago in October 2015 for the seventh PwC-KWHS Seminar for High School Educators on Business and Financial Responsibility.Read More

by Diana Drake
Educators attending our latest #HSBFR seminar gather by the Chicago River.
Educators attending our latest #HSBFR seminar gather by the Chicago River (Photo by Tina Smothers Photography).

The Knowledge@Wharton High School team recently returned to the Philadelphia, Pa., Wharton campus after spending a few invigorating days in downtown Chicago. No, we didn’t compete in Sunday’s Chicago Marathon, although we appreciated the energy and passion emanating from a backdrop of 40,000 runners. We instead spent the better part of October 9,10 and 11 with more than 100 high school educators from 15 different states during our PwC-KWHS Seminar for High School Educators on Business & Financial Responsibility. And while this was our seventh such seminar, it was our first time in Chicago greeting Midwest high school teachers from our conference space inside The Gleacher Center at the University of Chicago.

Throughout the three-day professional development opportunity, attendees deepened their knowledge, as well as exchanged thought-provoking and innovative ideas about teaching financial literacy and business and engaging their students. Most importantly, we elevated the conversation around financial literacy: the successes, challenges and opportunities.

Throughout the three-day event and in the days that have followed, educators have reflected on the dynamic and charismatic presenters from PwC and Wharton, who spoke on everything from innovation and entrepreneurship to financial planning hot topics and the economic value of higher education. Educators also welcomed the chance to learn practical applications for PwC and KWHS through hands-on applied learning sessions led by high school teachers and PwC representatives.

“This was one of the best seminars I have been to in my 22 years of teaching,” says H. B. Whitaker, a business and marketing instructor at Fayetteville High School in Fayetteville, Arkansas. “[Speaker] Pat Ryan’s discussion of ‘The Innovator’s DNA’ really resonated with me personally. He encouraged us to emphasize questioning, observation, networking and experimentation in our students.”

Darin Lewis, a newer teacher in the business department at Washburn Rural High School in Topeka, Kansas, especially valued “all the contacts” she made with other business and finance teachers, and the new concepts she plans to introduce into her classes by way of lesson plans, apps and real-life examples. “[I now understand] how important it is to incorporate financial literacy into every class I teach,” adds Lewis. “The statistics given during the conference were staggering when it comes to students graduating high school and the lack of knowledge they have on financial literacy content. It is my job as a high school educator to promote these topics, so students leave high school prepared.”

PwC and KWHS are continuing their collaboration and commitment to spreading financial literacy and business knowledge by hosting future seminars for high school educators. Next up is our November 13 to 15 seminar on Wharton’s Philadelphia campus, which is already in the final planning stages. Stay tuned for information about our return to San Francisco in June. Join the seminar conversation on Twitter with #hsbfr.