Junior Achievement USA Surveys of Parents and Teens Also Show Cost of School Supplies Presents a Financial Challenge for Most Families

(Philadelphia, PA)A new survey from Junior Achievement USA (JA) shows that 78 percent of parents plan to buy their children’s back-to-school supplies at traditional retail outlets this year, with only 8 percent planning to do so online, and 13 percent responding “don’t know/not applicable.” In all, 60 percent of parents say that it is a challenge to afford school supplies, while 57 percent of teens say it is challenging for their parents or guardians to afford school supplies. Conversely, 40 percent of parents and 43 percent of teens say affording school supplies is not a challenge. The survey of 1,204 parents of school-aged children and 1,000 teens was conducted by ORC International for JA.

“Parents are often reluctant to discuss financial matters with their children, especially when it comes to providing for needs, like buying school supplies,” said Paul Kappel, President. “As these results show, teens are already attuned to these issues, and they present an opportunity for parents to discuss with their children the considerations that go into these kinds of purchases so that they gain a better understanding of how to manage these sorts of decisions when they reach adulthood.”

In all, 64 percent of parents expect to pay less than $500 per child on back-to-school items (clothes and school supplies), while 72 percent of teens expect their parents or guardians to pay less than $500. Only 17 percent of parents and 16 percent of teens expect that more than $500 will be paid, per-child, for school supplies. Parents and teens responding “do not know/not applicable” came out to 20 percent and 12 percent, respectively.

When it comes to buying school supplies, 58 percent of parents plan to buy them from discount stores, while 11 percent plan to buy from department stores. Office supply stores (5%), warehouse clubs (3%) and “other stores” (1%) are also on the list of places parents and guardians plan to shop.


This report presents the findings of ORC International's Online and Youth CARAVAN surveys conducted among a sample of 1,204 parents of school-aged children and 1,000 13-17 year olds.  These surveys were conducted live from June 29 to July 6, 2017, for the parents’ portion and from July 11 to July 16, 2017, for the teens’ portion.

Respondents for this survey are selected from among those who have volunteered to participate in online surveys and polls.  Because the sample is based on those who initially self-selected for participation, no estimates of sampling error can be calculated.  All sample surveys and polls may be subject to multiple sources of error, including, but not limited to sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording, and response options.

JA Step to Success at La Salle Univeristy

On Monday December 12th and Thursday December 15th, Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylania co-hosted the JA Step to Success program at La Salle University. In partnership with the Alumni Association of the Univeristy and the School District of Philadelphia, over 500 third graders visited the campus and experienced the reality of a college ready future. 

Students from over s dozen Philadelphia elementary schools were led by volunteers including current La Salle students, faculty and alumni. Each third grader learned about college classes, learning opportunities and life beyond graduation. 

Interested in getting more involved with showing our third graders they have college in their future? Contact Anjela Alvarado at 484-253-0489 to see how you can help, or connect with your college or university! Or read more about upcoming openings on the JA Step to Success webpage.

JA Celebrates National Entrepreneurship Month with JA Launch Lesson!

For the third time this November Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania will be celebrating National Entrepreneurship Month with JA Launch Lesson!
During National Entrepreneurship Month, we'll be putting entrepreneurs into high school classrooms across the region to share what inspired them to start their own businesses and to open students' eyes to the opportunities provided by entrepreneurship. 
New entrepreneurs who are Millennials-those in the 20-34 year age range-decreased from 34.4 percent in 1996 to 25 percent in 2015.Loading
JA knows that now, more than ever, young people need understand that they can take their idea and create a business, which in turn creates jobs and economic growth.
By engaging today's up-and-coming business owners, we hope to help students better understand the challenges and benefits of starting a business.
This is a great volunteer opportunity designed specifically to fit into any busy schedule. Specific dates a scattered throughout the month at various area high schools. To find out how you can get involved in National Entrepreneurship Month in our community, please contact Entrepreneurship Program Manager Lauren Goldman at 610-230-2399, or Lauren.Goldman@ja.org.

JA of Southeastern PA Volunteer and High School Student Featured on American Graduate Day

On Saturday September 17th, PBS aired American Graduate Day, a public television program which featured mentors and their mentees. The six hour long program spotlighted Junior Achievement and the JA Company Program, along with 9 other non profit organizations. 

Comcast volunteer Trish Maher and her mentee Sameese Smith participating in the JA Company Program this past year, working to create the student run company One Love. The duo were interviewed by JA Alumna Juju Chang. 

Learn more about American Graduate Day here. Check out the video below for the 10 minute feature, and visit our Facebook page for some behind the scenes photos.


Local JA Students win Junior Achievement 2016 Company of the Year Title!


On Wednesday, June 22, in Washington, D.C., Junior Achievement USA named the local teen entrepreneurs who created the student-run startup Impress from JA of Southeastern PA as the 2016 JA Company of the Year, powered by The HartfordThe team, sponsored by Aqua America, was selected from among 15 competing student companies representing JA operations nationwide. 

Blüme, sponsored by IKEA USA, was also sent to the JA National Student Leadership Summit. The team brought back a second place award, Social Media award, as well as a winning team member. Hope Kim was recipient of the Jim Sweeny Award for Entrepreneurial Excellence!

Read More>>

Check out more about the National Competition>>

New Poll by Voya Foundation and Junior Achievement- Who is responsible for paying off student loan debt?

Poll: Two-Thirds of Teens See Borrowers, Not Government, Responsible for Paying Off Student Loan Debt

A new survey of 1,000 teens by Junior Achievement USA and Voya Foundation shows that nearly two-thirds of teens, or 65 percent, believe borrowers are ultimately responsible for paying off their student loans, even if they borrowed more money than they are able to pay off, while 11 percent believe the government should do so. Fewer, 7 percent, believe it is the responsibility of the college and 5 percent think it’s up to the lender to resolve.

The survey was conducted March 1-6 by Opinion Research. Read More>>

New Partnership with Philadelphia Foundation

Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania is thrilled to announce its receipt of a grant in the amount of $20,000 from the Fund for Children on behalf of the Philadelphia Foundation. The funds from this award will support Junior Achievement's "Keeping America Entrepreneurship-Strong" pilot initiative, a project focused on helping students both identify their innate entrepreneurial spirit, and develop a customized track in order to best cultivate that talent for lifelong success.
In partnerships with both the Philadelphia Public School District and Gallup, Junior Achievement will administer the "Gallup Entrepreneurial 10" evaluation to 200 at-risk youth to determine which JA programs will best leverage each student's boundless potential. The number of students impacted will increase incrementally over a three-year span, in which a cohort of 3,000 Philadelphia youth are ultimately evaluated and mentored through a tailored pipeline of programs that both inspire and prepare them for a future of economic and entrepreneurial success.
Junior Achievement believes that while a Free Market Enterprise is the backbone of our economy, entrepreneurially-minded students do not have access to the resources needed to realize and develop their unique skills early enough. JA looks forward to engaging in this dynamic project, identifying key indicators earlier and amplifying the results. 

MassMutual, the Philadelphia 76ers and Junior Achievement of Southeastern PA Partner for Future Smart Event

You won't find a better use for the phrase "knowledge is power" than when you're talking about financial knowledge. After all, the more you know, the better prepared you are to create a strong and financially secure future. Young people who are financially literate grow into adults who are prepared to make smarter choices about money and finances. 

On Tuesday December 1st, Junior Achievement partnered with MassMutual for their FutureSmart Challenge event. Held at the Wells Fargo Center, and in conjunction with the Philadelphia 76ers, nearly 2,000 seventh and eighth graders from the Philadelphia area learned about financial literacy and making smart money choices.

Actor and author Hill Harper spoke and interacted with the students about the importance of saving, staying in school, going to college, and career choices. Each has a profound impact on their financial success. 

The program travelled across the United States, visiting at least eight other cities as well, including Denver, Miami, Phoenix, Oakland, Charlotte and Boston. To date, the programs has reached nearly 20,000 students across the country.

Global Entrepreneurship Week

Junior Achievement of Southeastern PA participated in JA Entrepreneurship Week, a part of the global initiative of the same name. Nine local entrepreneurs visited six high schools during the week of November 16th to speak about their experiences. The entrepreneurs volunteered their time to engage students in sessions that explored the highlights, challenges, and preparations required to succeed in the global business economy. JA of SEPA would like to thank the individual volunteers and Young Entrepreneur Council members who participated. Below are the volunteers who inspired over 325 high school students to achieve more.
Kensington International Business High School:
-Javier Suarez, Partner/Founder C-Luxe Axiom
-Ashrit Kamireddi, Co-Founder/CEO VeryApt
-Alex Urevick-Ackelsberg, Co-Founder/CEO Zivtech, Member YEC (pictured left)
Downingtown High School East:
-Paul Kinmartin, Partner Baker, Tilly, Virchow, Krause, LLP
Radnor High School:
-David Eig, Bimbo Bakeries USA
Plymouth Whitemarsh High School:
-Judy Christis, former independent financial planner with Ameriprise (retired)
-Keith Angell, President/Founder PerPay, Member YEC
Mastery Charter School:
-Tina Wells, CEO Buzz Marketing Group, Member YEC
Haverford High School:
-Kevin Connor, Principal Modern Branding & Communications

Junior Achievement, Citi Foundation and OneMain Financial Offer Teens New Online Experience to Explore their Futures

Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania (JA) recently unveiled an online experience that is a one-stop shop for teens and their parents in helping them make decisions that will affect their futures. The new interactive web experience, called JA My Way™, is made possible by a grant from the Citi Foundation and OneMain Financial. 

"Now, more than ever, teens need ideas, guidance, and direction when it comes to determining their futures. JA My Way is designed with today's teens in mind, using the latest web design and gamification to help them explore their futures and find 'their way' in life," said Paul Kappel, Jr., president of Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania. "Junior Achievement is grateful to the Citi Foundation and OneMain Financial for their generous support of this resource."

JA My Way is an online destination for teens to learn about careers, starting a business and managing money. The experience combines games, rewards, information and social media to help teens explore these topics in a fun and exciting way. The target demographic are teens between the ages of 13-17. The experience is interactive, highly visual, and includes relevant information for teenagers, such as the costs that go along with owning a car, how much money needs to be saved for college, and what is on a W-2 tax form. 

The free online experience is mobile responsive and draws teens in by having them take a short visual quiz personality test. After they see which of 10 pre-determined personalities they are most aligned with, JA My Way guides them down a track geared toward their interests. Depending on the responses to these questions, the user will go through a pathway to explore potential careers, working with money and starting a business. 

Teens can customize the site by creating login information. They can create and save resumes and save jobs that they would be interested in working at some day. Through a rewards system, teens have the opportunity to gain badges that can eventually be redeemed for real-life rewards. To view the new site, go to https://www.jamyway.org/.

Viewers to Volunteers Partnership with CBS EcoMedia

Did you know that Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania is a part of the national Viewers to Volunteers (V2V) effort supported by CBS EcoMedia?

V2V is a platform that allows everybody to support worthy causes without spending a dime of their own money! The concept is simple: download the V2V app or visit the website, select Junior Achievement as the nonprofit  you want to support, and earn points by reading watching, and sharing positive stories. These points turn into real dollars for JA, courtesy of participating brands. There is no advertising on V2V. Instead, the platform is entirely underwritten by advertisers' media buys on other CBS platform, including network, local TV, radio, and interactive. 

By making it easy, fun, and free for everyone to give, V2V broadens JA's reach exponentially, creating a wider community of support for its important work in preparing our nation's young people to reach their potential. 

Watch the promo video now! You may download the V2V from the App Store, or on Google Play today so you can start giving back to JA! #V2VWithMe 

JA Partners with American Airlines

Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania was awarded 425,000 American Advantage miles through the 2015 American Airlines global partnership with JA Worldwide®. The 17 award certificates, each with a value of 25,000 miles for the equivalent of one domestic round-trip ticket, will send Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania's staff to attend professional development opportunities throughout this year to improve the way we work and expand our programs to more students throughout the region.

Share Your Story with Junior Achievement!

JA of Southeastern PA has the most dedicated and influential volunteers and we want to highlight their contributions! If you are a Junior Achievement volunteer, teacher, or student and would like to share your story detailing how JA has made an impact on you, please complete the "Share Your Success Story"questions and send to Lauren Goldman at lauren.goldman@ja.org. We will feature these stories through our promotional material to inspire others to get involved with JA!


JA of Southeastern PA Program Director Wins National Award

Laura Yohe, Program Director, of Junior Achievement of Southeastern Pennsylvania has been awarded the organization’s “Rising Star” Award. The award is given to mid-level staff members who are emerging leaders within the organization, and who demonstrate outstanding, measurable success in executing their responsibilities. The award, which was created in 2004, recognizes staff members who have shown leadership within their JA community and perform their duties at the highest level. 


Summer Programs Supporting JA of Southeastern PA

Summer programs around the area area teaching students financial literary and work readiness skills. Thank you for all of your support!


Diamond Credit Union, Ziegler Family Foundation and JADV Join to Support Pottstown Students

Diamond Credit Union, Junior Achievement of Delaware Valley, and the Zeigler Family Foundation joined forces to teach local middle school students about real world finance. The materials and training for the program were funded by the Zeigler Family Foundation, whose mission is to enhance education through the implementation of financial literacy programs. Diamond Credit Union provided eight volunteers to present the program to 10 classroom sections, for 6 classes each. The program has already begun, and will continue through the end of the school year.  

Fogo de Chão Brazilian Steakhouse to Host Benefit for Junior Achievement of Delaware Valley

On Thursday April 30th, Fogo de Chão is opening its doors to help support the children of Delaware Valley through Junior Achievement by offering a special JA Dinner Package. In celebration of Financial Literacy Month, 100% of the $50 dinner package proceeds from guests who make a reservation through JA will benefit the organization. This will allow thousands of K-12 students in Delaware Valley to receive financial literacy education. Take advantage of this offer to plan the perfect date, family night out, or business dinner for up to 12, and help support our community. 


Local High School Students Compete in Regional JA Company Program Competition

High school students in the JA Company Program, an after-school program run by Junior Achievement, will compete in the 2015 JA Company Program Regional Competition on April 23rd, at the Microsoft Technology Center in Malvern, PA.


Students in this program work with corporate mentors and team members from schools across the area to create and run their own small business. From start-up to liquidation, these students experience every step in the entrepreneurial process in a hands-on way while being guided by business professionals.  Mentors are provided by firms from across the region, including Accenture and Comcast, Aqua America, Bentley Systems, Bimbo Bakeries USA, Evolve IP, IKEA, Microsoft, and SAP.



The Allstate Foundation and JA USA Releases Teen and Personal Finance Survey Results

Junior Achievement USA® (JA) and The Allstate Foundation released today surprising findings from the annual Teens & Personal Finance Survey, which was expanded this year to include parents for the first time.

The 2015 survey reveals that nearly half of teens (48 percent) think their parents will help pay for college but only 16 percent of parents (of teens) report planning to pay for post-secondary education. Junior Achievement USA has commissioned the Teens & Personal Finance Survey for the last 16 years. The 2015 study was conducted online on Junior Achievement's behalf by Harris Poll in January 2015 among 801 parents of teens ages 13-18 years old and 800 teens ages 13-18 years old.


The Delco Show and Junior Achievement of SEPA

Junior Achievement of Southeastern PA takes over the airwaves to talk about  financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship

JA SEPA area President Paul Kappel, Jr. recently sat down with iradioPhilly.com's The Delco Show host Tore Fiore to talk about exciting new opportunities for volunteers, educators, students. They also talked about why and how Junior Achievement is making such a great impact in Philadelphia and surrounding areas. Click here to check out the podcast today! Or take a look at the recording below!


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