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JA salutes committed volunteers for service to students

As the new school year gets rolling, Junior Achievement of the Bluegrass paused to thank its volunteers who have given five, 10, and 15 years of service educating students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship, and basic financial matters. “That kind of commitment and longevity is fantastic. It really makes a difference with what we’re able to give back to the community,” said Sheri Evans Depp of Lexmark, who heads the JA board of directors.

In JA’s Adopt-A-School program, local companies provide student materials and volunteer training for a particular school. Other community partners support JA’s financial literacy programs and curriculum. During 2016-17, JA coordinated 251 volunteers in Fayette County Public Schools and altogether reached some 22,500 students across several counties. Among those were more than 1,600 FCPS youngsters who visited the JA BizTown/JA Finance Park facility off Georgetown Road.

“I’m in awe of your commitment and the energy it takes. We couldn’t be more appreciative of the work you do,” Miranda Scully, the Family & Community Engagement district coordinator for FCPS, told volunteers at JA’s Aug. 23 luncheon. “We thank you for saying you can and you do,” she added.

Seventeen volunteers received pins and certificates to recognize milestone years of service and their combined 547 sessions taught. “It’s good to come into a classroom and relate my real-world experience,” said Gary Rice, who works at Baptist Health Plan and volunteers at Julius Marks Elementary. “I think I get more out of it than the kids do.”

Rice, Karen Cropper, and Ronn Robinson have marked 15 years of volunteering. Receiving 10-year pins were Katherine Leigh (pictured at left), Meagan Sisk, Karen Ecton, Hui-Nee See, Susan Cohen, Billy Lanter, Kelly Abraham, Greg House, and Robin Harris, along with Craig Browning, Lora Knight, and Tommy Roberts. JA also saluted Cherie Fluek and Thom Wright for five years of service.

To get involved, visit the Junior Achievement’s site or call program manager Callie Tincher at (859) 219-2423.