While empowering young people to own their economic success, Junior Achievement also inspires participants to dream big and pursue their goals. One elementary school student, Michael Romaine, discovered what he wanted to do and set out to make it happen.
Sam Swope JA BizTown, located in Louisville, Kentucky, helps students understand the economics of life and the realities of the world of work through fun, interactive role-playing. They operate banks, manage restaurants, write checks and vote for mayor. Drawn to a political career at an early age, Michael wanted to be mayor of BizTown. He discovered, however, that getting elected to public office was not an easy objective to accomplish.
“Michael ran for mayor four times in a row and never got elected, but he didn’t give up,” said a staff member at Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana. “He attended JA BizTown with his fourth-grade class and then again with his fifth-grade class. He signed up for JA BizTown Summer Camp three times.
“Finally, in his fifth mayoral race at summer camp, he won! He believed he could do it, and he was right! What a great kid and what a great message to everyone, young and old, to never give up on your dreams."
And what does Michael say about his successful foray into the public arena? “So far, it’s gone pretty good. I like the job. It’s fun,” he said. “I wanted to see what it’s like to be mayor. Maybe when I grow up I might want to be president or the mayor of Louisville.”
Now, that’s JA empowerment!