Critical Issues Papers


2014 Teens and Personal Finance Survey

Junior Achievement's 15th Teens and Personal Finance Survey examines teens' and tweens' attitudes and behaviors around managing money. Data collected from young people ages 8-13 are included for the first time in this year's survey.

Millennials and Entrepreneurship

See what Millennials are saying about becoming entrepreneurs, and how mentoring can play an important role in start-up business growth.

2013 Teens and Careers Survey

Today's teens want to pursue careers that will provide both financial rewards and job satisfaction. To gauge teens' perspectives on their ideal careers and what steps they will need to take to get on their desired career path, Junior Achievement USA and the ING Foundation recently conducted their 12th annual Teens & Careers Survey.

The Role of Common Core Standards in College and Career-Readiness Education

America's schools face unprecedented challenges to prepare students for postsecondary education and entry into the U.S. and global workforce. Discover how programs developed by JA USA directly support the goals of the Common Core State Standards Initiative at elementary, middle, and high school levels to ensure students are college and career ready.

Junior Achievement: A Solution to the Workforce Skills Gap

The workforce skills gap has a significant impact on our nation's productivity, economy, and global competitiveness. Learn more about this issue and how Junior Achievement is addressing it, by teaching students how to apply the knowledge they learn in the classroom to real-world problems and equipping them with the skills they need to be college- and career-ready.

Junior Achievement Graduation Pathways

As a complement to its focus on helping all students understand the importance of staying in school, Junior Achievement is helping to positively impact one of the biggest economic and social issues facing our country—the high school graduation rate. Read about JA's comprehensive study to develop a model focused on increasing this important metric.

2011 Free Enterprise Survey

Junior Achievement USA and the National Chamber Foundation recently conducted the first-ever national survey of high school juniors' views of entrepreneurship, free enterprise and capitalism.

The Entrepreneurial Workforce

Read the results of a Junior Achievement/Gallup survey about the current state of the American workforce and what can be done to make our workforce more competitive.

What Do Teens Say about Money Management?

Read what teens are saying about how they manage money and when they want to learn these important skills.

Teens and Entrepreneurship (PDF)

Government Stimulus and Economic Recovery

Did the 2009 federal economic stimulus work? Although the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act helped pull the economy out of a serious recession that might have nosedived into a depression, it was not nearly as effective as the government had predicted. This cutting-edge Junior Achievement report discusses the U.S. policymaking process, why the economic recovery is lagging, and the outlook for 2011-12.

Job Shadow White Paper (PDF)

How Business Can Help Attack the Dropout Crisis in America

The high school drop-out crisis has far-reaching economic implications. Read how Junior Achievement and AT&T are tackling the issue by providing students with real-world job shadow experiences that enhance the relevancy of education.

Increasing Graduation Rates

This paper provides an overview of the high school dropout issue in the U.S., how school districts and states are responding to this issue, and how Junior Achievement USA is part of a collaborative solution to increasing graduation rates. In this paper, you will be introduced to key statistics and gain a deeper understanding of how Junior Achievement programs reinforce the value of an education and bridge the gap between what is being taught in school and how it can be applied in the real world.

America's Housing Crisis

This JA Critical Issues paper provides a context for understanding America's current housing crisis. Through this paper, the reader will understand how the economic crisis impacted individual homeowners and the entire housing industry.

Benefits of Employee Volunteer Programs (PDF)

Benefits of Employee Volunteer Programs

There is ample evidence that volunteering can strengthen work teams and build employee skills as well as contribute to professional development. Check out the impact report results for more information!

Teens and Entrepreneurship (PDF)

Teens Speak Out: Junior Achievement Surveys

What do teens say is the biggest hurdle on the path to entrepreneurship?  Check out the results of Junior Achievement's 2010 Teens and Entrepreneurship Survey here.

New JA/ING Teen Poll on Careers (PDF)

New JA/ING Teen Poll on Kids and Careers

JA/ING Poll on kids and careers finds that a majority of teens are confident they will find their ideal career.

JA Alumni 2010 (PDF)

Junior Achievement Creates Alumni Success

Junior Achievement reached out to its alumni to help determine the long-term impact of JA programs. Our alumni are more than twice as confident that they can successfully compete in a business environment, compared to adults without JA experience. Check out the impact report results for more information!

Federal Financial Deficit (PDF)

A Primer on the $1.4 Trillion Federal Budget Deficit

This JA white paper explains the fundamental economics and politics of the issue and discusses the elements involved in reversing the trend of a steadily increasing deficit.