"Money goes by quick with the bills, it just disappears," 9th grader Taylor Moore said with a surprise.
It's not a typical statement you'd hear coming from a 9th grader, but after a course in "Real World 101" Taylor Moore understands the reality that can be a disappearing paycheck.
"Some of the prices were higher than we thought they would be, but we can really appreciate our parents for going through all that," explained Moore.
Moore and over 300 other 9th graders understand they won't always have their parents to depend on, so the "Career Countdown helped them prepare for life on their own.
The Alabama Cooperative Extension System creates real-life scenarios where students choose a career and learn what it's like to live off their paycheck
"They were very surprised about the cost of things: utilities, housing, and transportation," explained Rosalind James with Alabama Cooperative Extension Systems.
Those aren't the only bills that came up; the students even learned what it was like to have to deal with the unexpected, but many of them didn't like the hand they were dealt.
"It shows that they always need to save money for these unexpected expenses that come up," said James.
Most students realized the most important lesson in choosing a career is preparing early and continuing their education.