Team: Eagle Eye
Location: JA of Southern California
Innovative Products: This sports media business has created college recruitment packages for high school athletes and demo videos for coaches. Eagle Eye employees attend games, collect video footage of the players, and edit together individual DVDs based on presale orders to showcase their customer’s skill.
From the Student’s Perspective: Zach Miller, vice president of sales and finance
For the better part of high school, I always seemed to have a penchant for business. Finally when I became a senior, I was able to get involved in the field that would soon become a passion of mine. In August of 2011, I joined Chaminade’s Eagle Business Program, which implemented JA’s Company Program. This was the first time I heard of the organization Junior Achievement. From this program we formed the student run company known as Eagle Eye. Eagle Eye is great. From the real world experience to the daily interactions, I love everything that the business has to offer. I was soon named vice president of sales and finance. Eagle Eye would never have been possible if it weren’t for the plentiful opportunities that JA provided. It gave us the necessary boost to run our own company and provided knowledge that allows the business to run smoothly. I think it is safe to say that Junior Achievement was monumental in helping Eagle Eye develop into what it is today.
As a salesman during the school year, there were sometimes when we had difficulties finding players interested in our services. I looked through the list of athletes that I could contact and found a name that I was somewhat familiar with: Pierce Milliken. I contacted him right away trying to get him interested in the Eagle Eye DVDs. He said he’d pass the message along to his mom, so in my mind, I looked at this opportunity as a failed sale. A week later, I bumped into his mom around school, and she talked to me about buying copies of some of the games. I made the sale on the spot, and I remember the satisfying feeling of placing a hefty check in my pocket before turning it in to the finance department.
Since I was also Pierce’s customer service rep, it was my job to follow up and make sure all was well with the sale. I came in contact with his mom again and she told me the story as to why she made this purchase. Her father, Pierce’s granddad, was seriously ill and had been confined to his hospital bed for months. He never got to see Pierce play football on Friday nights. Every week, I would deliver Pierce the copy of a game and he would give it to his grandpa, who would watch them in the hospital. Mrs. Milliken talked to me about the joy he received by watching these games and how it gave him something he could look forward to during those times of struggle. He passed away with only a few weeks remaining in the season, but the impact on Pierce and myself lasted much longer than that.
I was happy to know that Eagle Eye was able to leave a lasting effect on the community rather than just on the local business level. Without Junior Achievement to get us started, none of this would have been possible. For me, I would not have been able to experience how great a joy it is to help people rather than just make money. I am truly grateful for JA’s existence as it has influenced this company into making a huge, positive impact on the community, and on Pierce’s family.