More News From the Field: A Prison Psychologist, A State Education Research Director, A Private School in New York

Written by Dr. Amy K. Glasmeier on 01/18/2018

Hello Dr. Glasmeier,

I am a Psychologist in the federal Bureau of Prisons and, in response to your recent posting on the living wage calculator website "Who Uses the Living Wage Tool and Why", I just wanted to let you know that I use the LWC with most of the inmates with whom I work. Many inmates have very little understanding of just how expensive it is to support themselves and their families in their respective home communities and the LWC helps them start thinking more realistically about saving money and planning their education/vocation programs in prison. Thanks for your tool!

Dr. B. C. G, Ph.D.
Advanced Care Level Psychologist
Federal Correctional Institution-I
Federal Correctional Complex
Butner, NC 27509
919-575-4541 ext. 4051
bcgray@bop.gov

Dr. Glas,

I truly appreciate your work on calculating a living wage for states, counties, and MSAs. I have been working to make it better known and used in Virginia state government. I would like to ask if it would be possible to receive the data for Virginia as a data file to allow direct inclusion in the next version of our reports on post-completion wages and student debt. I think it would really help students and families understand better the implications of their choice of major and degree, and the consequences of not finishing school (we are probably the only state publishing wage and debt outcomes of students who drop out after one semester or one year - it's not pretty).

Thank you for any consideration,
T.R.M.
Policy Analytics
VLDS (Virginia Longitudinal Data System) Lead State Council of Higher Education for Virginia

Dear Dr. Glasmeier,

My name is MB and I teach at Bank Street School for Children, an independent pre-K through 8th grade school in New York City. My colleague CRD and I are beginning a unit soon on household budgeting. We are also interested in having students explore what a Living Wage is and how it relates to quality of life.

We are using the Living Wage calculator that you developed to create different scenarios for our students to explore. Students will search the internet for apartments, come up with a transportation plan/budget and come up with a meal plan/food shopping strategy. They will be using spreadsheets to track their budget and visualize their spending. We will also include lessons on unexpected life events, credit card debt and wage gaps.

The Living Wage calculator made this unit possible. It made our household scenarios much more realistic. We are looking forward to seeing how our students respond to the challenges of budgeting and reflect on what a Living Wage really means.

Thanks for the work you’ve done on this. If you’re curious to learn more, we’d be happy to answer any questions.

Warmly,
MB