UT's Economics Club is in its final leg of involvement with the Up to Us Program, a nationwide campus campaign seeking to educate on economic and fiscal issues.
Members of UT's Econ Club have worked to bring the campus a variety of events raising awareness regarding the federal budget as well as the long-term fiscal and economic outcomes.
Jessica TenBroeck, senior in economics, views her involvement with the Up to Us Campaign this year as a rewarding and informative experience.
"With economics as my major, I believed that I knew quite a bit about the national debt," TenBroeck said. "However, I have learned so much more while participating in this program."
The Econ Club has prepared numerous events for the Up to Us Campaign, including conducting a federal budget simulator in conjunction with the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center and the Concord Coalition, painting the rock, and holding discussion panels with professors and senators.
UT's campaign began Jan. 21 and will end Friday. The last four events of the campaign include a movie showing of "Inequality for All," which was held Monday, the ongoing "Lift the Debt" campaign, a federal budget simulator to be held today at the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center, and "Fort Box," a display to be held on Pedestrian Walkway Friday from 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
"Fort Box," organized in partnership with UT Recycling, will be the largest event of the campaign. More than 5,000 boxes will be used to create a box fort. The construction will visually represent the U.S. national debt as well as demonstrate the huge amount of recycling conducted by UT in the span of one month.
Kayla McMurry, senior in economics, said she is excited about the last week of events and interacting with UT students about these issues.
"During our last week, we hope to finish our campaign strongly and continue to educate students on the national debt," McMurry said.
TenBroeck's said her favorite part of the campaign has been the "Lift the Debt" event, a debt calculator based on student's online submissions recording calories burned and weight lifted over the past five weeks.
"It is really fun to see the debt 'disappear' by tracking weight lifted and calories burned," TenBroeck said. "It's amazing how much a person can lift in one gym session and then see how little that affects the national debt."
Samuel Rule, junior in economics, participated in the Up to Us campaign this year.
"The campaign has had its challenges and barriers to cross here on campus," Rule said, "but it's definitely been a worthwhile opportunity for me."
Rule said he believes the campaign succeeded in raising issues of national debt and economic problems on campus.
"Overall, I think our team put in a tireless effort and achieved these main campaign goals," Rule said. "We have students talking about the issues, and that is what this campaign has been about."