Junior Achievement Rock Star

Original Story from Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana

When the Lauri Wade, Counselor at Kerrick Elementary School in Louisville, tweeted “Best day ever!” along with her student’s photo, she could never have imagined the chain of events that would occur.

The photo of her 5th grade student, Dallas, dressed as the JA BizTown utility Meter Reader, showed a young man whose face just beamed from the experience he was having in the learning laboratory. Within a few hours, the JA of Kentuckiana staff determined that Dallas should be on the cover of the 2017 Annual Report, which was a single day away from being sent to the printer.

 JA staff sent an email to the JA  BizTown teacher liaison asking the  school to try to obtain permission  from Dallas’ parents. After a flurry of  late night emails, the teacher  reported back that Dallas’ aunt gave  this permission. The graphic  designer scrambled to change the  cover and the printed annual report  was delivered two weeks later.

When JA of Kentuckiana president Debra Hoffer took copies to Dallas’ classroom, Ms. Wade pulled her aside and said, “You know, he almost didn’t get to come because of his behavior. I had to bring him in my car.” When Dallas was handed the annual report, he let out a loud, “Yay!” All of his classmates surrounded him and, rather than being left behind and forgotten, he is now a rock star.

Imagine if we could empower a generation to transform “I can’t” into “I can.” We can. Together.

Making a Difference in One Life

Original Story from Junior Achievement of Northern Indiana

This is a testimonial from Dan Copelan, a Board of Directors member for JA of Northern Indiana.

“In November I spent an hour in a classroom at Northrop High School as a Junior Achievement volunteer. In celebration of Entrepreneur Week (November 14-20) as one of 100 volunteers, our mission was to share knowledge with students about entrepreneurship.

This was not my first time as an adult in a classroom, but it was the best classroom experience I’ve had. The students were respectful, interested and asked a lot of questions. In fact, the class ended before we could get to all of the questions. And, it wasn’t just a few students; most of the class showed interest in the topics we discussed.

The classroom teacher is Lisa Arnold. From the collective response of the students, I firmly believe that Ms. Arnold is an excellent teacher. Her students showed a level of maturity that you don’t typically see in high school freshmen.

The other day I received a number of handwritten notes from Lisa’s students. As I read them, I felt grateful that I am in a position to be invited to participate in this type of event. Those notes tell me that I made some impact on them. If I was able to connect with just one young person, it was worth it and I would do it again in a heartbeat. In fact, I have already been back to Ms. Arnold’s classroom to visit another of her classes.”

            Dan Copeland, President & Publisher of Business People Magazine in                         Fort Wayne, Indiana

The Power of a Mentor

Original Story from Junior Achievement of Wisconsin

Our JA Business Challenge was held on February 16, 2017.  Haley Gandara, one of our student team mentors, shared this story about her experience with Junior Achievement:

“I was involved with JA as a student at Memorial High School in Madison, Wisconsin. Dan Pacetti was a JA volunteer in our personal finance class and came each week to speak. He and my personal finance teacher, Mr. Thomas, were the first to point out my business skills and made me truly consider business as a career. I always had an interest in entrepreneurship, but they were the first to encourage me to consciously think about it.

When my class partner and I won the JA Titan Challenge in our classroom, we had the opportunity to compete at the same Business Challenge we are volunteering for on Thursday. I remember trying a new strategy that didn’t work and then catching up at the end to win a scholarship. We went on to the Wisconsin JA Business Challenge to compete against others from across Wisconsin. Dan Pacetti became a mentor to me after that.  He helped me as I looked through business programs and decided where to attend. I still appreciate that relationship to this day, and I have JA to thank for it!”

Haley is now the Director of Client Relations and Marketing at Empower Wealth Management in Madison, WI.

 

AT&T Job Shadow - A Glimpse Into the Future

Original Story from Junior Achievement of South Florida

The following is a Blanche Ely High School teacher’s reflection of an AT&T Job Shadow.

“Thank you for the awesome opportunity you provided to our students to get a chance to visit AT&T this week!

The students were exposed to a whole new world. It was very educational and  the students appreciated the hands-on activity. They got a chance to learn different types of positions available within AT&T. I myself was amazed by how much I learned about how responsible AT&T employees are to the customers they serve without knowing any of them.

One of the AT&T staff members mentioned that the students did not all have technical backgrounds but the questions that they asked were very logical.

It was awesome for them to see a career field that they can apply for and move up in the company by having a good work ethic and being willing to learn. I believe this opportunity provided our students with options that they never considered before.

I sincerely thank you!”

-Nicole WIlson

AIG Success Story - JA in Action

Original Story from Junior Achievement of Dallas

Junior Achievement really had an impact on Jose L., a 4th grader at William L. Cabell Elementary School. According to his teacher, Maria Soto, Jose had talked a few times about writing computer programs when he grew up, but after learning about entrepreneurship and what it takes to run a business, Jose decided to become an entrepreneur. Jose was taking a computer coding class and he decided to use what he learned in that class to create an app. The app would help people organize and create playlists of their favorite music and he could sell it to his friends. Ms. Soto, who also taught the coding class, said that from March until the end of the year Jose worked hard designing the app, and writing and refining its code. She saw a new determination in Jose.

However, Jose developed more than an app during those last three months of school. He was developing himself and learning the soft job skills that employers look for such as a strong work ethic and problem solving. He used what JA taught him to think like an entrepreneur and fill a need he saw among his group of friends. He learned that success is a result of hard work. Hours of writing and refining computer code helped Jose develop strong work habits.

The Junior Achievement class was the beginning for Jose. When asked how he can apply what he learned from JA at home, Jose said without hesitation, “I learned I can start my own business.” The lessons he learned from JA and his journey creating the app will be with him for a lifetime. From JA Jose learned that it is his education that will allow him to further his ambitions and become the entrepreneur he wants to be. From his coding class and experience building his app, Jose now has the experience and knowledge to take on even greater challenges. Now in the fifth grade, Jose is looking for his next great opportunity.  

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