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Arizona State business students learn real lessons in mock budget session

(Charlie Leight/ASU News)

PHOENIX — Twenty-nine students of Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business got the chance recently to experience the process that their local representatives go through when attempting to negotiate a balanced budget.

The mock legislative session, which ASU News said was called the “Capitol Budget Game,” took place on the floor of the Arizona State Senate and assigned a class of MBA students the roles of governor, legislative leader or lawmaker.

The students, average age of 40, and who hold management positions at various companies, had to work together during the exercise to determine which programs would receive funding and which would not.

The students were accompanied on the floor by real lobbyists who were instructed to advise them the way that they would advise real lawmakers.

The purpose of the mock budget session, which was created by an alumni of ASU’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, is to help the students figure out how the legislative process works and how it can affect them or a company they work for.

After learning about state lawmaking, the students will move on and travel to Washington D.C. later this month to learn about policy-making at the federal level.