Jamal Merveil is a member of Civic Corps, a division of NYC Service, working with Junior Achievement of New York for the 2018-19 year as a Programs Associate, helping to bring JA programming to the 90,000 students we serve across all regions.
We asked Jamal to share his favorite parts about working with JA New York so far. Here’s what he told us:
Working with JA New York has been one of my most fulfilling work experiences to date. When I first started, I didn’t expect to be so emotionally involved with the programs that we offer schools around New York City. Being able to work with students who feel that being financially literate is important gives me so much pleasure, and knowing that my work has a deeper purpose and what I am teaching will be carried on past my 10 months of service is huge.
Since beginning my time at Junior Achievement in September, my favorite program has been the Microsoft Job Shadow. We’ve been able to expose students who probably wouldn’t have had the opportunity if they weren’t part of Junior Achievement to the tech industry at a young age. When students first enter the Microsoft flagship store on 5th Avenue, you can see the small twinkle in their eyes grow and feel how excited they are to be exposed to what Microsoft has to offer. Students are able to use firsthand the new virtual reality technology that’s being produced for private companies, and they have the opportunity to interact with Microsoft’s new Personal Assistant, Pepper who answers any questions you have for her.
In honor of the 100th anniversary of Junior Achievement this year, JA New York said that we have a goal of reaching 100,000 students this year, and when I heard that, I knew that I had to bring the program home. My first thought when hearing that was I needed to reach out to my elementary and middle school to let them know that there is an amazing opportunity for their students. I made the call, and we set up a meeting with the Assistant Principal, math coach, and parent teacher coordinator. The rest is history: JA will be in my elementary school this winter starting in three classes. My next goal is to facilitate an ongoing relationship with a corporate company and the middle school, so stay tuned for that! By the time my year of service with JA New York is complete, I would like for JA to have partnered with the neighboring high school and elementary/middle school on the Frank Padavan Campus. With this, I will be sure that I have made a real difference in the lives of the kids from my own community.