Over 700 eighth graders from across Knox and Warren County joined the University of Illinois Extension and Delabar CTE System for their annual “Welcome to the Real World” Event last Friday, April 26th at the Galesburg High School Field House. Delabar CTE System is a regionally-organized system that delivers career and technical education programs to its member schools. The Delabar CTE System regions are aligned with the boundaries of the Henderson-Mercer-Warren Counties Regional Office of Education, Knox County Regional Office of Education and Carl Sandburg College. At the event, students went through the simulation as though they were a 25-year-old who had completed their education requirements and were financially independent. Prior to the simulation, teachers and students reviewed many concepts related to financial literacy such as using a savings account, writing a check, and keeping an account register. After interviewing for their selected job, students went through the simulation making purchases related to choices they had made prior to the simulation like what car to drive, where to live, entertainment choices, and much more. Nearly 100 volunteers were present during the event. Schools present this year were Abingdon-Avon, Churchill, Costa, Galesburg Christian, Immaculate Conception, Knoxville, Lombard, Monmouth-Roseville, United, and Williamsfield.