Junior Achievement (JA) is the world's largest organization dedicated to educating students about work readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs. Junior Achievement programs help prepare young people for the real world by showing them how to generate wealth and effectively manage it, how to create jobs which make their communities more robust, and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace. Students put these lessons into action, and help strengthen their communities.
Junior Achievement's purpose is to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy.
Junior Achievement reaches 9.7 million students per year in 379,968 classrooms and after-school locations. JA programs are taught by volunteers in inner cities, suburbs, and rural areas throughout the United States of America and in 122 countries around the world.
Junior Achievement's 330,000 classroom volunteers around the world come from all walks of life and include business people, college students, parents, and retirees. These dedicated individuals are the backbone of the organization.
JA is one of a few global nonprofits to use independent, third-party evaluators to gauge the impact of its programs. Since 1993, independent evaluators have conducted studies on JA's effectiveness. Findings prove that JA has a positive impact in a number of critical areas. These results are available free upon request. Summaries of the findings also are published in the JA Programs section at www.ja.org
A Brief History
Junior Achievement was founded in 1919 by Theodore Vail President of American Telephone & Telegraph; Horace Moses, President of Strathmore Paper Co.; and Senator Murray Crane of Massachusetts. Its first program, JA Company Program, was offered to high school students on an after-school basis. In 1975, the organization entered the classroom with the introduction of Project Business for the middle grades. Over the last 30 years, JA has expanded its activities and broadened its scope to include in-school and after-school students.