Payday was on a Friday for a second-grade class at Evans Elementary School.
Each pupil received five fake $1 bills for their pretend job at the Sweet 'O' Donut shop as part of a Junior Achievement lesson taught by a former Evans Elementary student Elizabeth Getha.
Getha, 22, then made some of the students city employees - a firefighter, a police officer, a mayor, a librarian and others. She then took $2 back from each of the pupils to pay the government workers.
"Does anyone know what you're paying when you give money to the government to pay for services?" Getha asked the class. "It's called taxes."
The lesson was just one of several Getha taught on Oct. 14 as a student teacher majoring in early childhood education at Augusta State University.
The recently elected president of Student Professional Association of Georgia Educators hopes her new title and the practical teaching experience will earn her a job with the Columbia County Board of Education following her graduation in May.
"I look at it as an experience in leadership that gives me an edge over everybody that does compete for those jobs," Getha said. "Everyone wants a job in Columbia County. It's always been my dream, even as a child, to be a teacher here."
A 2001 graduate of Evans High School, Getha grew up in Columbia County. Her mother, Linda, is a paraprofessional at Evans Elementary, which sparked her interest in education at an early age.
"I've always been around teachers," she said. "I've always loved helping others, so that made me want to become a teacher, because I'll be able to help so many people."
At the urging of a college professor, Getha won the president's job of the SPAGE chapter at ASU in January. The same professor also encouraged her to run for president on a state level and she got the job in June.
Getha organizes seminars for education students at ASU. She also helps conduct workshops to help future teachers pass the Praxis exam, a requirement for Georgia educators in public schools.
"On the state level, I attend all of the meetings and conferences that PAGE has and I represent the student body," she said.
PAGE is the largest professional educator's organization in the state, boasting more than 60,000 members.
In addition to her SPAGE duties and her volunteer work with Junior Achievement, Getha is a member of Kappa Delta Epsilon, an honorary educational fraternity, and works part-time as a bookkeeper.
"I look at all of it as an experience," she said.
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