Don’t put your life on layaway

BOSTON–In an economy like this, it is important to understand how we came to this point and how it is still making an impact. On Nov. 5, 2008, a classroom at Simmons College was filled with a small group of 10 college students gathered for a night to discuss how our economy is being affected and how the United States is facing the possibility of a recession.

The event, “Red Zone,” was hosted by the Boston chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. The speaker and member of the organization was senior Jazmin Flete, an economics and finance student at Babson College.

The night began with refreshments and snacks. Using a PowerPoint presentation, Flete elaborated on some of the crisis issues our economy is facing, such as the bailout President Bush approved, the sub-prime mortgage meltdown, and the Rescue Plan (Tarp). The slides displayed images and questions on the economy today.

Flete used facts and statistics from Wall Street to explain the issues, such as how asset-backed securities worked, and how they are securities based on pools of underlying assets. For example, residential mortgages provided development of the asset-backed securities market.

In order for the students to understand the economy and how it will affect them, Flete had to relate to the students and ask them questions to encourage participation and understanding. “How did we get here?” Flete asked, “and how can we as college students reconfigure our finances and adjust our habits to the economy?”

The room remained silent because many of the students were not educated on these topics. Flete explained how the new president’s economic reforms will affect our community, and how the bailout passed will affect our economy and why it was passed. Due to banks going out of business and homeowners facing foreclosure, the bailout would help the banks recover and continue to keep businesses moving.

As the event continued, students became more involved and had more concerns. Natori Arrindell asked, “How will we know or who confirms we are in a recession? As a college student, how are we affected?” Flete explained that college students are affected because more jobs are laying off employees and especially for students in their senior year, it will be difficult for them to find jobs. She also elaborated how it will be difficult for students to receive financing from their colleges.

The event gave the students a better understanding of the economy’s issues. The United States must focus on preventing a recession because typically a depression follows a recession. Flete said that many companies and department stores will have reduced prices during the holiday to regain consumers. The goal is to have consumers continue to buy. Even though many homeowners are facing a crisis, the crisis is causing it to be a great market for buyers. Now President Obama has been elected, and he has introduced a new budget plan and is reconstructing Bush’s policies.

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