How many miles and hours on the road would you be willing to drive in order to impact a student’s future?
Junior Achievement (JA) recognizes the dedication and time volunteers, sponsors, and educators have given to better the youth in surrounding regions. In the 2015-2016 school year, more than 230,000 volunteers dedicated their time and effort to more than 4 million students ranging from kindergarten to high school to teach financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurial programs.
Earlier this year, partners and dedicated company volunteers came through again for the seventh year to engage with Native American students in the San Juan school district with the San Juan Career Fair. Business volunteers buckled up for the 800-mile round trip drive from Salt Lake to the Monument Valley area Indian Reserve for two days to serve a total of 500 students. The drive doesn’t compare to the determination of the volunteers as many are returning for their second, third, and fourth year.
The career fair provides students with motivating keynote speakers and a job expo where students can explore career paths paired with classes that will equip them with the skills needed for their future profession. A principal of one of the schools that JA served commented that the difference between Junior Achievement and other organizations trying to impact this rural student population is that the volunteers and business sponsors return year-after-year to support this event.
The education impact that is brought to this region wouldn’t be possible without the volunteers, as well as the financial support given by American Express. The career fair has been funded by American Express’s generosity for the past seven years, which has enabled hundreds of students, volunteers, and businesses to touch the lives of the children on the Reserve.