Junior Achievement of San Diego County Teen Entrepreneurs of "CCA Today" Win "JA Company of the Year" Award Powered by The Hartford

San Diego teens best 14 other student-run companies to score national title

On Wednesday in Washington, D.C., the teen entrepreneurs of "CCA Today" from Junior Achievement (JA) of San Diego County were selected from among 15 JA student companies as the JA Company of the Year, powered by The Hartford, at Junior Achievement's (JA) National Student Leadership Summit (NSLS).

In addition to winning the JA Company of the Year title, the San Diego, Calif., teens representing the student company in Washington, D.C. were awarded a JA Company of the Year Scholarship from The Hartford. The scholarships were awarded to five students on each of the top three finishing teams. Each member of the first-place team present in Washington, D.C., was awarded a $4,000 scholarship; second-place team members were awarded a $2,000 scholarship; and third-place team members were awarded $1,000 scholarships.

The JA of San Diego County students' company, CCA Today, created an app for students, parents, and staff to stay connected to school events and news at Canyon Crest Academy.

Junior Achievement's National Student Leadership Summit is a contest of business skills, ingenuity and innovation that focuses on the accomplishments of U.S. JA Company Program ® students, ages 15-19, during the 2014-2015 academic year. Currently reaching nearly 13,000 U.S. students who created nearly 700 start-up ventures, JA Company Program students start and run a real business enterprise under the guidance of a volunteer from the local business community. They devise and market a product or service which fills an unmet consumer need and recruit investors for their company.

The student companies competing at the NSLS were assessed on their financial performance, individual team members' personal and professional development, on a self-produced commercial about their product or service, on their team's live presentation to a panel of business leaders, and on their company's performance at an Entrepreneurship Expo on Capitol Hill attended by Members of Congress. 

"Junior Achievement is empowering these teen entrepreneurs to own their economic success through business ownership. It is an exciting opportunity for Junior Achievement students to demonstrate the teamwork, leadership and innovative thinking that will help them drive success in the business world," said Jack E. Kosakowski, president and chief executive officer of Junior Achievement USA.

The following awards were presented last night at Washington, D.C.'s Ronald Reagan International Center, capping the three-day summit. The 2015 JA National Student Leadership Summit awards were presented to:

  • JA Company of the Year, Powered by The Hartford: Awarded to the student businesses that most effectively demonstrated their companies' achievements as well as the personal development of each team member.
  • 1st Place: CCA Today, JA of San Diego County
  • 2nd Place: YOUnique Frames, JA of Chicago, which created picture frames and cork boards
  • 3rd Place: Timeless Creations, JA of East Central Ohio (Canton), which made customized keepsake capsule boxes.
  • New York Stock Exchange Best Financial Performance Award: Awarded to the student team that performed the best against a high-level set of criteria, including profitability, investor expectations, employee earnings, product quality, leadership and operational efficiency.
    • Won by Mustang Mail from JA of the Upper Midwest (Minneapolis, Minn.) which created and personally delivered custom greeting cards.
  • FedEx Access Award: Awarded to the student team with the best business plan demonstrating potential for job creation, growing small business and expanding global development.
    • Won by uFusion, Junior Achievement of Delaware Valley (Philadelphia, Pa.) for its gel air freshener product.
  • Social Innovation Award: Presented by Microsoft YouthSpark and awarded to the student team that created a solution to address a local, national, or global social concern. Companies demonstrated how they applied entrepreneurial thinking to create a realistic, achievable, and innovative solution and described lessons learned from the experience.
    • Presented to Herban Movement from JA of Northern California, which created a hybrid encyclopedia cookbook and a reusable tote bag.
  • Social Media Award
    • Won by Power Up, Timeless Creations, and CCA Today for generating a combined 1,389 mentions of the #JASummit hashtag.

To view photos and videos from the JA National Student Leadership Summit, please visit www.facebook.com/JuniorAchievementUSA.

About Junior Achievement USA® (JA)

Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA programs are delivered by corporate and community volunteers, and provide relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship. Today, JA reaches 4.5 million students per year in 118 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.8 million students served by operations in 120 other countries worldwide. Junior Achievement USA is a member of JA Worldwide. Visit www.ja.org for more information.

Media Contacts:

Stephanie Bell
Junior Achievement USA®
(719) 540-6171