Categorized | Education

DCCA launches the 2011-2012 LifeSmarts Consumer Education Competition


HONOLULU – The Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) announces the start of the 2011-2012 LifeSmarts Consumer Education Competition in Hawaii. LifeSmarts, the Ultimate Consumer Challenge Varsity Program, is a FREE consumer education competition open to teens in grades 9-12. The competition tests students on their knowledge of personal finance, health and safety, the environment, technology, and consumer rights and responsibilities.

Varsity teams may sign up and compete online from September 12, 2011 to December 7, 2011 (11 pm EST). At the end of the online competition, scores are tabulated and the top scoring teams will be invited to compete at the state championship to be held in Honolulu on February 11, 2012. The winning team will represent Hawaii at the national competition which will take place from April 21-24, 2012 in Philadelphia.

Schools and organizations may enter more than one coach, and coaches may enter more than one team, but only one team from each school or organization may qualify for the state competition at the Varsity level.

LifeSmarts allow teens to learn critical life skills through competition that builds teamwork, self-esteem, verbal communications skills and leadership ability, and help them become smart consumers who are responsible with their money.

Coaches gain access to educational resources through online curriculum, pre and post tests for students and links to local and national organizations. For teachers looking for ways to supplement their classes, the LifeSmarts program meets national educational standards. LifeSmarts will complement any school curriculum and can be used as a learning activity for classes, groups, clubs, and community organizations. Interested
coaches may log onto for additional information about the Hawaii competition.

All teams must have an adult sponsor or coach to participate. Registration is free and is done online at Anyone interested in forming a team may contact the LifeSmarts State Coordinator, Jackie Choy, at 586-2760 on Oahu for more information. Neighbor Island residents can call for information on LifeSmarts by dialing the number listed below for their island then the 5-digit extension followed by the # sign.

Kauai: 274-3141, then 62760#
Maui: 984-2400, then 62760#
Big Island: 974-4000, then 62760#
Molokai & Lanai: 1-800-468-4644, then 62760#

Junior Varsity teams may sign up and participate in an online-only competition designed especially for middle school students in grades 6-8 from September 12, 2012 to February 24, 2012. Winners of the JV competition will be recognized online and awarded certificates for their achievement.

In addition to the Varsity and Junior Varsity LifeSmarts competitions, a new partnership between LifeSmarts and Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) will allow FCCLA chapters nationwide the opportunity to win special chapter awards and recognition for participating in the FCCLA TeamSmarts Challenge and LifeSmarts FCCLA Challenge 2012 this year.

FCCLA chapters competing in TeamSmarts have the opportunity to win a $100 cash award for their chapter by being the top-scoring FCCLA team for that month. Points are awarded based on both accuracy and speed – students have to work together to develop a winning strategy.

The top-scoring team in the LifeSmarts FCCLA Challenge 2012 in January 2012 will be invited to represent FCCLA at the 2012 National LifeSmarts Championship in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in April 2012 to compete against LifeSmarts state champion teams from across the country. The winning FCCLA team will receive a $2500 award to help with travel expenses.

Registration is limited to one team per FCCLA Adviser. A team competing online may have any number of students, but a team that competes in-person is composed of 4-5 students.

LifeSmarts is brought to Hawaii by the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) in partnership with the Hawaii Credit Union League and is run by the National Consumers League. Local businesses interested in becoming a sponsor may contact the state coordinator for more information.

Editor’s Note: Keaau High School has been the state’s LifeSmarts Champion four times.

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