JA In The News - Junior Achievement of Greater New Orleans

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Advocating Life Lessons

Jane Carlson, a Career Education Coordinator at Thousand Oaks High School in California has experienced the impact of Junior Achievement programs from parents AND students.

Through Junior Achievement programs Carlson feels that her students are not only more knowledgeable about their personal finances and the importance of saving, but they are also more aware and prepared for what it takes in order to succeed in the “real world.”

Adding to student success she’s observed as a result JA programs, one of her students revealed that she aspired to start preparing for her future right away. “She was inspired to make it a habit starting now of paying all her own expenses for clothing, entertainment, and her share of the family utility costs, rather than wait until she is older to adjust to paying those expenses. She now contributed to her family by giving her parents a monthly check. Little does she know that they are secretly saving that money for her college tuition,” reported Carlson.

As her current students prepare for high school graduation, she has received requests from parents for their child to revisit Junior Achievement programs. “Now that graduation and college expenses are approaching, the parents are wanting their seniors to go back to JA Finance Park in order to build upon their budgeting skills,” Carlson said.

“The parents report how surprised they were when they picked up their students after JA Finance Park and heard the words, “Thank you, I didn’t realize how much you have to pay for our living expenses.” The students became more appreciative of the money spent on their behalf,” said Carlson.

Her enthusiasm and engagement with Junior Achievement within her high school classroom has resulted in her winning  Junior Achievement of Southern California’s Teacher of the Year. Welcoming Junior Achievement programs into her classroom is something she plans on continuing as she’s experienced the value behind preparing students for their futures with JA on her side.

 

 

The Money JAR—Amber Yang & STEM

What did you want to be when you grew up? A doctor? An astronaut?

According to ThoghtCo. , a company that focuses on providing relevant content for those interested in learning and growth,  the top three job roles that women fill the most include registered nurses, meeting and convention planners and elementary & middle school teachers.

One industry that is severely lacking women is the area of Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM). The National Center for Education Statistics found that about 35 percent of women earn an undergraduate degree in STEM.

Enter an 18-year-old Stanford University Physics Student Amber Yang, winner of the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award. The project that earned her the award revolved around space debris. The technology Yang is pioneering is able to detect, track and catalog the paths of debris that is orbiting in “close” radius. The purpose of her award-winning astrophysics projects is to equip space organizations with predictions as to when space debris will collide or even enter the pathway of space shuttles and other spacecraft systems, as well as provide safety measures to all of us on earth.

In pursuing her passion for math and science, the biggest barrier she faced was lack of quality education within the department of science in her high school days. She mentions that there wasn’t a developed science or computer science class for those who took an extended interest in the area of study. To combat the lack of science education, she turned to the internet where she taught herself the fundamentals.

Another challenge she faced included gender bias. At a young age, she noticed that the “boys only work with the boys and the girls only work with the girls” in middle school science courses but as she got older she noticed that there were fewer girls than boys in the advanced high school courses. She felt that the boys in her courses perceived her as “incompetent” in her science knowledge. As she did before, she turned to herself where she relied on her own abilities to complete her assignments with her own (self-taught) science knowledge.

Miss Yang is an excellent example, role-model, and future astrophysicist to all young females looking to pursue their passion in a STEM industry. JA is excited to see Amber Yang’s exploration into her bright future ahead.

Listen to JA’s Interview with Amber HERE

  

Munoz-Boudet, Ana. “STEM Fields Still Have a Gender Imbalance. Here's What We Can Do about It.” World Economic Forum, 16 Mar. 2017, www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/03/women-are-still-under-represented-in-science-maths-and-engineering-heres-what-we-can-do.

Lowen, Linda. “Top 10 Occupations That Employ the Most Women.” ThoughtCo, 16 Feb. 2016, www.thoughtco.com/occupations-employ-largest-percent-women-3534390.

Adventure of Two Young Entrepreneurs

How does an apparel company inspired from the Swiss Alps and NASA get their start? It all started when two friends, Michael Markesbery and Max Squire, decided to go backpacking throughout Europe. One of their favorite experiences in the trip was climbing the tallest mountain in the northeast Swiss Alps-- Säntis. Yet, the trek up the mountain sparked more than just their sense of adventure—it sparked the innovation of outdoor apparel.The journey of climbing Säntis exposed a problem that they (and millions of other hikers) experience.  In order to stay warm, Michael and Max were layering themselves with thick bulky winter clothing, which in turn reduced their range of motion.

Upon arriving back to the United States, one of the founders received a NASA scholarship, which provided a solution to the problem they experienced in Europe — aerogel. While the material was already being used to insulate space shuttles and some of the world’s tallest skyscrapers, it proved to be the perfect material match—breathable and warm, but thin.

With some aerogel research and prototyping, a call to a clothing designer in Milan Italy, and a highly successful Kickstarter campaign, the outerwear company successfully made their entrance into the world of apparel!

At JA, we love stories of entrepreneurial success! Want to learn more about how we harness students’ passion and help them turn it into a future? Check out JA Be Entrepreneurial, a program that challenges students to start an entrepreneurial venture while still in high school!

Click HERE to learn more about JA Be Entrepreneurial®

To listen to the Podcast startup adventure of Lukla, click HERE 

What is Driving Your Budget?

What information is typically requested on a car loan application?

This is one of the questions teens find when they start the Financial Test Drive, presented by Junior Achievement (JA) and American Honda Finance Corporation (AHFC).

Through research conducted for JA and AHFC, 76 percent of teens between 15-17 believe they are confident in understanding the financial responsibilities of vehicle ownership while 85 percent of parents with children 15-17 believe their child does not understand these concepts.

So how is one to learn the importance of personal finance?

"Vehicle ownership is often a teen's first real-world experience managing their own money," said David Paul, senior vice president, American Honda Finance Corporation. "The important lessons learned at this stage in their lives will help them manage their responsibilities today, as well as help them succeed in their future financial obligations and aspirations in life."

Are you up for the test? Click HERE

JA & Launch Lesson

A survey of 1,000 teens and 1,000 parents of teens was recently conducted by ORC international in order to explore the opinions of entrepreneurship. From this study, JA found that nine-in-ten parents would be extremely or very likely to support their teen’s interest in becoming an entrepreneur as an adult. Half of the surveyed teens reported they would need more information on what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur while 35% reported they would need a role model who is a business owner in order for them to consider pursuing starting their own business. To address this, JA and EY are working together on JA Launch Lesson.

JA Launch Lesson brings entrepreneurs and small business owners and high school students together to explore the highlights and challenges of entrepreneurship, as well as the preparation required for successful participation in the global economy.

 

To learn more about the survey, click here.

To learn more about JA Launch Lesson, click here.

To get involved in JA, click here to find a local JA office! 

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