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VRHS Team Leads State in LifeSmarts

LifeSmarts team members from VRHS prepare for competitions this school year.

One group of Vista Ridge High School seniors is proving they have the skills to take on the real world. For the third year in a row, VRHS students successfully participated in the statewide LifeSmarts competition, earning the privilege to represent Colorado at the national level.

LifeSmarts is a program that teaches teens about five key topic areas: consumer rights and responsibilities, the environment, health and safety, personal finance and technology. The heart of the program encourages youth to prepare for adult life in today’s complex, global marketplace.

Five seniors make up the accomplished team, and each had the opportunity to serve in competition as an expert in one of the five key topic areas. The roster includes Danielle Brown, Alyson Doty, Kaleb Au, Danylo Semakov and Emily Sipes.

“My teachers are amazing and were always there to push us and make it more fun,” shared Danielle, team captain. “I consider everyone on the team a friend, and I have learned about leading and working hard with a great group of people.”

LifeSmarts teammates share their real-life knowledge with fellow Wolves at VRHS.

The knowledge bowl contests challenge students in both online and live exercises. “The program provides opportunities for students to learn content that is truly useful outside of school,” shared Sahvanna Mease, team coach, and family and consumer sciences teacher. “Best of all, it is done in a fun way!” Creative activities such as crossword puzzles and matching games test the real-life knowledge of the teens. Mary Mullikin, fellow family and consumer sciences teacher, also coaches the team.

Like every team setting their sights on reaching a state-level competition this spring, the exciting season for the LifeSmarts team is not without some disappointment. Although VRHS finished first in Colorado and qualified to represent the state at the national competition in Washington D.C., COVID-19 restrictions kept the event from taking place. Still, the VRHS seniors will make the most of their in-depth learning as they step out into the world as graduates.

Amy Matisek