Junior Achievement

Trade School: A College Alternative in 2019

By Hannah Henry, Manager of Marketing & Public Relations, Brand
Junior Achievement USA

A survey conducted by Gallup and Strada Education Network revealed that 36% of those who attended college regret their choice of major. Of those who pursued or completed a bachelor’s degree, findings uncovered that 40% would pick a different field of study. That’s roughly $25,000 a year, for a student who is in-state attending a four-year university, to decide that their degree was not the best choice for them.

According to Mark Danaher, a career counselor at Newington High School in Newington, Connecticut, “My feeling is that high school students don’t have to know the exact career they want, but they should know how to explore careers and put time into investigating them and learning about their skills and interests.”

At 18 or 19, we are expecting teens to know their career-path and putting a hefty price tag on pursuing what they believe is the right option for them. But, are they being given all their options? All the while, some teens may not be exposed to alternatives outside of attending colleges, such as vocational schools.

To assist in the discovery of which path is right for you or your teen, here is an overview of how trade schools could be the perfect fit!

The Difference Between Trade and Vocational Schools

Vocational and trade schools are similar in nature as they both offer an accelerated path to get into a specific career. While most use them interchangeably as an educational institution that teaches individuals for a particular skill set, some identify them as having smaller differentiations. According to the U.S. Department of Education, technical schools teach the theory and science behind an occupation, while vocational schools may take a more hands-on approach to teach skills.

The Unique Perks of Attending a Trade School

Unlike traditional colleges, trade schools focus on one specific area of “trade” learning. This hyper-focus on a specific skill enables trade-schools to offer smaller classrooms with more one-on-one learning opportunities for the students. Additionally, vocational schools educate students of industry-specific rules and regulation, as well as real-work experiences to enable them to get familiar with the type of work they are pursuing.

The amount of time it takes to successfully complete trade school is another perk to this vocational path. While programs vary, vocational training can go from as little as ten weeks. In turn, this makes this educational career path highly appealing to those who are seeking to get into a profession as soon as possible.

With the unique benefits of vocation schooling, this route isn’t just for those who have graduated high school but also for those who are planning to enter a specific industry for the first time, reenter the workforce, and for those who are seeking to change their career path. The diversity amongst trade school students enables them to network and learn from one another, creating an inclusive learning environment.

Current Demand for Skilled Trades in 2019

A large majority, 70%, of construction companies across the country are having trouble finding qualified workers and construction isn’t the only industry suffering. It is estimated that every day for the next decade, 10,000 baby boomers will be reaching retirement age and will be leaving specialized positions in which fewer workers can fill. Luckily for trade schools, their robust skill-focused programs offer a bright future. Careers that will be experiencing more and more demand for skilled labor include:

–     Carpenter

Total new job openings: 83,800

Average salary: $51,120

–     Plumber

Total new job openings: 75,200

Average salary: $58,150

–     Electrician

Total new job openings: 59,600

Average salary: $59,190

Click here to explore possible career paths!

Think the trade-school path is right for you? Click here to learn more!

Program Introduces High Schoolers to Career Paths, Including Skilled Trades

Junior Achievement of South Florida offers its program JA Career Bound to high school students in South Florida. JA Career Bound is a cutting-edge, skills-building leadership program where participants learn the skills necessary to succeed in today’s workforce.

After an opening retreat, students meet once a month for program days focused on specific industries. Students visit some of South Florida’s premier businesses to learn firsthand about the career opportunities and what companies are looking for in future employees. Students learn from top executives who share their journeys to success.

We use interactive JA curriculum to teach key work skills, including communication, critical thinking, goal setting, interviewing, personal branding, problem-solving, public speaking, resume building and teamwork. At the end of the year, students will have the opportunity to put their skills into action by participating in various paid internships with job shadowing. For further details, including registration, CLICK HERE

 

Trade School: A College Alternative in 2019
read more

Top Soft Skills in the 21st Century Workplace

By Hannah Henry, Manager of Marketing & Public Relations, Brand
Junior Achievement USA

City & Guilds CEO, Chris Jones, once said, “Unfortunately, some people believe that soft skills aren’t that important. However, almost every employer I’ve ever talked to about this disagrees. In a world where job roles are changing rapidly, soft skills will be one of the few constants…” When you think about all of the new colleagues you have met over the years, the teams you’ve worked on, and the challenges you’ve faced within your business, soft-skills are at the heart of it all.

While some might argue that soft skills hold lesser value to a business, a report from International Association of Admin Professionals, OfficeTeam and HR.com reveals 67% of HR managers reported they would hire a candidate with strong soft skills, even if his or her technical skills were lacking. Why might this be? Employees with strong soft skills have the ability to grow and flourish in any environment due to the fact that they have experience and interpersonal skills that make adapting easier than those who lack such skills.

Soft skills include communications, listening, and emotional perceptivity, such as empathy and sympathy. These skills tend to reside in personal attributes, personality, and character traits, and social cues picked up throughout one’s life. These skills allow people to connect with one another by effectively “reading” those they interact with. These are not skills that are learned in a short period of time, instead, they are acquired, tuned, and even perfected throughout experiences and time.

Building Soft Skills in the Workplace

Research from the Hay Group identified managers that incorporate a range of “soft talent”, those with soft skills, in their leadership approach have been shown to increase their team performance by about 30%. Through the survey work of LinkedIn profiles of people who are getting hired at the highest rates, it was determined: creativity, persuasion, collaboration, adaptability, and time management were the 5 most in-demand soft skills sought by companies in 2019. How can a company harness these skills in their workplace? The answer is not to find new candidates to fill positions. Training in these areas is available. In fact, research from MIT Sloan determined that soft skills training may improve productivity within an organization. Findings also included that such training returned roughly 250% on investment within eight months post-study.

Finding Candidates with Soft Skills

Hard skills or technical skills are easier to identify when meeting a potential employee. For the most part, the candidate will include their experience and hard skills on their resume, as well as mention them in an interview. Soft skills are not so easy to identify. When you’re looking at a possible candidate for a position, most employers are looking to ensure a person can do the job at hand. They want to have the reassurance that this individual can handle the complexity of the workload and complete crucial projects. But by focusing on only this skillset, also known as “hard skills”, employers are overlooking the underlying skills that determine how a candidate will interact with those around them, be able to connect with their peers, managers, and even clients. Not everyone develops soft skills at the same pace, but experience assists with the development. More experience can equate to building stronger skills at a faster pace compared to those who have not stayed within a position or a company for long.

Interview Questions to Ask

LinkedIn revealed that only 60% of hiring managers agree that screening for soft skills is tough, but crucial as it will determine how new hires will be able to interact with your team. The professional networking platform identified 6 key soft skills and questions to ask to decode how a candidate’s level of soft skills.

1.  Adaptability

Ask the candidate to discuss a time when they were asked to do something they haven’t done before, how they reacted and what they learned.

2.  Culture Fit

Explore what the interviewee is looking for in a job by asking what three things are most important to them in a position or workplace environment.

3.  Collaboration

Have the candidate give examples of when they had to work with someone who was challenging to work with, how they handled working with this particular individual, and what the outcome was.

4.  Leadership

Ask the interviewee to discuss when something significant didn’t go according to plan at work, what was their role in the project or task, and the final result.

5.  Growth Potential

Have the candidate discuss how they handled a crisis or problem when their manager was unavailable and who they consulted with to determine the solution.

6.  Prioritization

Ask the interviewee to tell you about a time when they had to juggle several projects at the same time, how they were able to manage their time and the final result.

To learn more about how students can develop their soft skills to prepare for the workforce, check out JA Career Success®!

In addition, Junior Achievement of South Florida offers its program JA Career Bound to high school students in South Florida. JA Career Bound is a cutting-edge, skills-building leadership program where participants learn the skills necessary to succeed in today’s workforce.

After an opening retreat, students meet once a month for program days focused on specific industries. Students visit some of South Florida’s premier businesses to learn firsthand about the career opportunities and what companies are looking for in future employees. Students learn from top executives who share their journeys to success.

We use interactive JA curriculum to teach key work skills, including communication, critical thinking, goal setting, interviewing, personal branding, problem-solving, public speaking, resume building and teamwork. At the end of the year, students will have the opportunity to put their skills into action by participating in various paid internships with job shadowing. For further details, including registration, CLICK HERE

Top Soft Skills in the 21st Century Workplace
read more

Buying Local in a Buzzing Economy

By Hannah Henry, Manager of Marketing & Public Relations, Brand
Junior Achievement USA

How many times have you heard “Buy Local” or “Support Local Businesses”? Probably hundreds of times. So why this “local” push? What does it do for you or your community? With summer here, the concept of buying locally will only increase, specifically about your local farmers’ markets. While providing you with delicious produce, farmers markets potentially have a more significant impact on the community than it does just in your fridge.

First off, let’s explore some fun facts:

  • Did you know that foods in the U.S. travel an average of 1,500 miles just to get onto your plate? Besides providing community perks, farmers markets cut down on the pollution due to these extensive trips.
  • The growers that you meet at farmers markets can also answer all of your questions about what products they have, where they came from, and how they were grown or raised.
  • People who shop at farmers markets have 15-20 social interactions compared to 1-2 per visit if they went to the grocery store! Talk about getting connected in your community!
  • The USDA’s Agriculture Marketing Service began tracking the farmers market activity in 1994. Since then, the markets in the United States have grown to 8,720, which is a little over 7% from 2013 alone.
  • The total annual sales from U.S. farmers markets are valued at about $1 billion!

What are Farmers Markets

To start let’s define what farmers markets really are. In essence, these local markets include farmers who live in nearby towns who bring their fresh produce and more to an open space, most likely an open parking lot, for community members to purchase. Believe it or not, the USDA has actual state rules and operating guidelines that farmers have to follow in order to be eligible to sell their vegetables and fruits, which means their locally grown items have been reviewed by similar, if not the same, standards as your grocery store products! In order to participate, the farmer or vendor agrees to pay a fee or percentage of their sales for their booth space.

Inside the Community Economy

Now, let’s jump into the good stuff- the economic impact of farmers markets in your very own communities! To start us off, did you know 89% of farmers surveyed reported sourcing their supplies locally, meaning that what they receive from their communities they are essentially putting back in! This is nearly 2 times the amount of money that is put in compared to wholesale farms, which reported only purchasing 45% of their inputs from their neighbors. To break it down even further, studies conducted by Civic Economics discovered that for every $1.00 we spend at a large grocery store chain, only 15 cents will stay in your local community.

Creating Jobs… Locally

Farmers markets in South Carolina reportedly created between 257-to-361 full-time jobs and generated up to $13 million, by one estimate. Another study from the Sacramento Region in California discovered a job effect of 31.8, which meant for every $1 million of “output” or sales they produce, a total of 31.8 jobs are being created within their community, including on-farm labor and other farm-related positions.

Farmers who are in higher demand by their community members have an opportunity for growth or expansion. By doing so, more “hands-on-deck” during the growing and selling time will be necessary. Through this type of scenario, local community members may find additional work or primary work readily available to them by these farmers.

Ease of Access for Communities

The Farmers Market coalition reported in 2016 that $20.2 million in SNAP benefits (aka food stamps) were spent at local farmers markets. Additionally, over half of the farmers market shoppers (60%) reported that their local market had better prices than they experienced in their grocery stores!

Want to start shopping locally this summer? Click here to find a farmers market nearest you!

Learning the impact of local businesses provides an educational opportunity for youth in your community. Amongst all Junior Achievement’s programs, JA Our Community puts a high focus on helping elementary-school students understand how their community operates, what they can do to contribute, and how their local economy works.

Buying Local in a Buzzing Economy
read more

South Florida Business & Wealth July 2019: Students Offer Consulting Services

South Florida Business and Wealth July 2019: JA’s Entrepreneurial Students Offer Consulting Services

By Sally Ann O’Dowd
July 2019 Issue

From learning the ropes of supply chain management to studying the latest in big data, Geomani Brooks was not a typical high school graduate. His evening routine of researching companies likewise showed exceptional rigor for his age.

But such are the interests and habits Brooks developed during his two years in Junior Achievement of South Florida, as a junior and senior at South Broward High School. From there, he earned a 2018 summer internship at City Furniture, whose president, Andrew Koenig, is a JA board member.

“I was shadowing the global logistics team for two months,” recalls Brooks, who will enter his sophomore year at Broward College in the fall. “Each day , I would shadow a different person, and learn how they do things as individuals and as a team. It was amazing, how much went into sourcing fabrics; they were very aware of where they got products from and child labor laws. That was one of the first questions I asked them.”

CLICK HERE to read the full South Florida Business & Wealth article.

South Florida Business & Wealth July 2019: Students Offer Consulting Services
read more

Research Park at Florida Atlantic University® to Celebrate 2019 Awards

By Brittany Sylvestri
Research Park at Florida Atlantic University

The Research Park at Florida Atlantic University recently named the recipients of its fourth annual Research Park Annual Awards. The awards celebration will take place on Wednesday, Sept. 25 from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at The Addison, 2 East Camino Real, Boca Raton. Tickets cost $125 per person.

The Research Park awards recognize distinguished contributions to the Research Park’s mission to create and sustain the ideal environment for innovation and invention, maximizing the academic and entrepreneurial talent and regional resources in South Florida to accelerate economic development and prosperity.

“The Research Park at FAU Awards highlight the work of our stakeholders to make the South Florida region more innovative and competitive in the knowledge economy and this year’s recipients personify the mission of the Research Park at FAU, each one is innovating and bringing new forces to bear which enrich our region,” said Andrew Duffell, president of the Research Park at FAU.

The award recipients for 2019 are:

Distinguished Entrepreneur: Rodrigo Griesi is one of the driving forces behind DECORA, a Brazilian startup that was recently acquired by Creative Drive, a content creation engine. Griesi’s involvement at the Research Park at FAU and his participation in its economic gardening initiatives helped the company get noticed and acquired by Creative Drive in 2018. He has 20 years of experience building and running new businesses in the technology industry. Griesi started at DECORA in its early stages, as an angel investor, then became the country manager, bringing DECORA’s services to market.

Distinguished Researcher: Borko Furht, Ph.D. has several patents pending and interesting corporate interactions that will leverage patents. Furht is a faculty member in FAU’s College of Engineering and Computer Science and is the site leader for the NSF-funded Center for Advanced Knowledge Enablement, which has been joined by several Research Park at FAU companies. His current research is focused on software designed for the next stage of video compression technology.

Distinguished Organization: Junior Achievement of South Florida is training the next generation of business leaders and employees by educating students about financial literacy, entrepreneurship and work readiness. Its mission is to inspire and prepare youth to succeed in a global economy. Junior Achievement delivers more than 20 unique programs to 50,000 students in Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Distinguished Leader: Honorable Michael Udine is the District 3 commissioner in Broward County, a position he was elected to in 2016. He advocates for innovation and knowledge-based economic development, supporting regional organizations’ initiatives. When introduced to one of the Research Park at FAU’s entrepreneurs he immediately started business development for him. In addition, Udine is a director at Legacy Bank of Florida, a small community bank assisting small businesses in Broward and Palm Beach counties.

To purchase tickets to attend the event, click here. For more information about the Research Park at FAU, visit research-park.org.

Research Park at Florida Atlantic University® to Celebrate 2019 Awards
read more

Elementary Milestones for Future Success

By Hannah Henry, Manager of Marketing & Public Relations, Brand
Junior Achievement USA

From Kindergarten to fifth-grade, most children do not have a clear understanding of finances or money in general. What they learn at this stage in life are concepts that will continue to build as they grow older. While at this stage in their lives, they don’t have bills or loans to worry about, it puts their financial future on the horizon and gives them something to think about as they get older.

To put your child ahead of the curve, there are countless ways to introduce every-day transactions and learning-moments! Here are the primary milestones that elementary students are struggling with and ways that you can get your child more confident with outside of the classroom:

Grocery Store

While at the grocery store or any place of business, there are tons of opportunities to show your child the thought process and money concepts you use to make your decisions. Be sure to take a few seconds when you’re deciding between two items to discuss what you are using to determine which product or service is better than the other and why you are choosing a particular one. As you go down an aisle that contains products that are not a necessity but are something you want, discuss the difference between needs and wants. Include how by picking a want you may be sacrificing another product that was also want (or even a need) on your list, explain that this concept is called opportunity cost.

Once your shopping trip has been brought to the register, note that while you know everything has a cost, your child might not. Explain to him or her that all of the products you picked up at the store have a cost as well as taxes that are added to them. The taxes that are included are called sales tax, which states and local governments impose that help pay for schools, roads, police and fire departments. While the concept of taxes goes far deeper than this, it will begin to create the foundation for further growth and understanding in the future. This is also a perfect time to explain to your child what method of payment you are choosing and why. This will get him or her more familiar with money options available in the economy.

Banking

Before exposing your child to the concepts or mortgage companies, credit unions, and investment banks, start with the primary institution where money is held, your local bank or even internet banking app. This is the heart of financial literacy as children learn how savings, currency, deposits, and types of money typically start their journey here.

Tell your child what you want to accomplish while you are at the bank and what you will have to do in order to accomplish this goal. When depositing a check, tell your child about the deposit form you fill out and what it will do when it is processed through the system.This is also a great time to set your child up with a savings account; this will teach him or her that it is never too early to start and that by beginning early, they are preparing for their future.

Home

Finally, after the trip to the bank and the grocery store, you’re home. The place where families come together to discuss their day, what they did, learned, and what they are excited for in the future. This is the perfect place for conversations of budgeting/money management and charitable giving goals!

A survey conducted by the American Psychology Association found that 95% of those surveyed believe parents should talk to their children about money, yet only 64% said they were taught to manage money correctly, and 37% responded that they speak with their family members on the subject of money. There lies an area of opportunity for you and your family to come together.

Budgeting is one of the most important pieces when it comes to financial success. Creating a budget, managing the budget, and sticking with the budget. Bring your children into the conversation when you are creating the family budget. If you don’t create one, now would be a great time to start! Include all of the living expenses like home/mortgage, utilities, car costs, insurance, etc. From there examine what is being spent on the non-urgent resources included in your family’s every-day living. By doing this, you’re not only enlightening your child to the real world of the expense of life, but you are also enabling them to start a habit of their budgeting and saving for the future.

If your child receives an allowance, be sure to convey that while their money circulates throughout the world, it is in their hands to determine what to do with it. Are they wanting to spend it, save it, or perhaps give it to a charity? These money decisions should be your child’s as they worked for it. Be sure to provide them with some advice as to what it could go towards long-term versus short-term, or what it could accomplish by assisting an organization that seeks to make changes locally or globally.

With all of these opportunities to share your knowledge of money with your elementary school child, you are not only arming him or her with the knowledge to make better decisions for the future, but you are assisting them to develop on concepts that are crucial to future development.

For a list of resources for your elementary school student, check out Junior Achievement of South Florida’s programs here!

Elementary Milestones for Future Success
read more

Junior Achievement Teen Entrepreneurs Receive Scholarship

For Immediate Release
June 25, 2019

For More Information Contact:
Christopher Miller, Marketing Manager
Junior Achievement of South Florida
(954) 979-7110
Christopher@JASouthFlorida.org

Junior Achievement Teen Entrepreneurs Receive Scholarship

Two Junior Achievement of South Florida teams compete against 13 other student-run companies at National Student Leadership Summit. Pure Serenity places in top 3.

City of Coconut Creek, Florida – On Wednesday, June 19, in Washington, D.C., the teen entrepreneurs of Junior Achievement of South Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School company team, “Pure Serenity”, won second place among 15 JA student companies. Teams competed to win the JA Company of the Year at Junior Achievement’s (JA) 2019 National Student Leadership Summit (NSLS).

The South Florida teens representing their student company in Washington D.C. were awarded a scholarship. The scholarships provided to the five students represent each of the top three finishing teams. Pure Serenity team members were each awarded a $1,000 scholarship by the Achievement Foundation.

The annual JA Company of the Year Competition is a contest of business skills, ingenuity and innovation that focuses on the accomplishments of U.S. JA Company Program ® students, ages 15-18. Reaching more than 10,000 U.S. students during the 2018-19 school year that created nearly 500 start-up companies, JA Company Program gives teens the skills to start and run their own businesses under the mentorship of local business volunteers. The teens develop a product/service designed to fill an unmet consumer or community need/service, they secure investments, produce, source, market and sell their product or service.

Junior Achievement of South Florida is proud to have two JA Fellow Company teams selected as part of 15 finalist teams to compete in Washington, D.C.  for four consecutive years.

“I am very proud of our team! The JA Fellows Company program has allowed us to learn how a business operates, and we have gained firsthand experience in running a profitable business. Thanks to Junior Achievement  of South Florida, our teacher and mentor advisors for this incredible experience,” said Lexi Ofstein, President of Pure Serenity.

Pure Serenity produces and markets fashionable lava bead diffuser bracelets that provide a simple and convenient way to maintain well-being and reduce stress through the power of essential oils. Some of the proceeds from sales were donated to Parkland Cares, a local resource to help individuals cope with tragedy.

In addition to Pure Serenity, Junior Achievement of South Florida’s NSU University School company team VIBEzzz was invited to the National Student Leadership Summit. VIBEzzz is a smartwatch that connects to a user’s cellphone via Bluetooth and detects heart rates, tracks exercise and most importantly, vibrates to keep drivers from falling asleep behind the wheel.

“Congratulations to the JA Fellows students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and University School for being selected as two of the top fifteen teams in the country! Both teams did an incredible job representing Junior Achievement of South Florida and our community and special congratulations to Pure Serenity for bringing home second place.  We are proud of the deep impact this program has on over 500 students in 25 high schools across Broward and south Palm Beach counties,” said Laurie Sallarulo, President and CEO. “These students have developed the skills it takes to run a company, including consensus building, fostering relationships, team work, accountability, perseverance, hard work and adaptability. This program is nothing short of transformational!”

The student companies competing at the JA 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.

About Junior Achievement of South Florida
Junior Achievement of South Florida (JA) inspires and prepares youth to succeed in a global economy. JA provides real-world training in financial literacy including budgeting, spending, investing and the use of credit; offers cutting-edge skill-building opportunities that enable young people to explore meaningful, productive careers; teaches students how to start businesses; and introduces entrepreneurial values that strengthen workplaces. Last year, with the help of over 7,100 trained corporate and community volunteers, JA delivered over 20 various programs to almost 50,000 students in classrooms throughout Broward and south Palm Beach counties and at JA World Huizenga Center at the Lillian S. Wells Pavilion, a first-class facility housing JA BizTown and JA Finance Park. For more information about Junior Achievement of South Florida, visit www.JASouthFlorida.org.

About Junior Achievement USA® (JA)
Celebrating its centennial in 2019, 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 more than 4.8 million students per year in 107 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.2 million students served by operations in 100 other countries worldwide. Junior Achievement USA is a member of JA Worldwide. Visit www.ja.org for more information.

JA Fellows Teams at NSLS 2019 on ABC News

ABC7 Sarasota Coverage of NSLS 2019

Junior Achievement Teen Entrepreneurs Receive Scholarship
read more

Two Schools Compete at National Student Leadership Summit

For Immediate Release
May 30, 2019

For More Information Contact:
Christopher Miller, Marketing Manager
Junior Achievement of South Florida
(954) 979-7110
Christopher@JASouthFlorida.org

Marjory Stoneman Douglas and NSU University School Students to Compete at Junior Achievement’s National Student Leadership Summit

Two local groups of teen entrepreneurs will go head-to-head against 13 other teams in Washington, D.C., June 16-20.

City of Coconut Creek, Florida – For the fourth consecutive year, Junior Achievement of South Florida is proud to announce two JA Fellows student companies have been selected as part of 15 finalist teams (out of 700+ across the U.S.) to compete at the Junior Achievement National Student Leadership Summit (NSLS) in Washington, D.C.

The Junior Achievement of South Florida student teams Pure Serenity (Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School) and VIBEzzz (NSU University School) are two of the 26 teams that participated in our local JA Fellows Company program. Students, teachers and their advisors will be traveling to the nation’s capital for the three-day event, June 16-20, to compete with other teen entrepreneurs for the National JA Company of the Year.

This 10-month program provides an opportunity for high school students to start and run a real business enterprise under the guidance of business mentors from the local community. The teens devise a product/service designed to fill an unmet consumer need/service, they secure investments, and produce and market their product or service.

“The JA Fellows program has allowed us to learn how business operates, and we have been able to gain firsthand experience in running a profitable business. We have strengthened our sales and communication skills and learned more about customer service and engagement. Thanks to Junior Achievement, our teacher and advisors for this incredible experience,” said Lexi Ofstein, President of Pure Serenity, at the recent Light Up The Night event.

Pure Serenity produces and markets fashionable lava bead diffuser bracelets. It provides a simple and convenient way to maintain well-being and reduce stress through the power of essential oils. Some of the proceeds from sales were donated to Parkland Cares, a local resource to help individuals cope with tragedy.

VIBEzzz is a smartwatch that connects to a user’s cellphone via Bluetooth and detects heart rates, tracks exercise and most importantly, vibrates to wake up drivers falling asleep behind the wheel.

“We are so proud of this program and the deep impact it has on over 500 students in Broward and south Palm Beach counties,” said Laurie Sallaurlo, President and CEO of Junior Achievement of South Florida. “These students have discovered firsthand how to apply their education to the real world of business. We are thrilled to have two teams competing again this year. We look forward to seeing them shine on the national stage and in the years to come.”

About Junior Achievement of South Florida
Junior Achievement of South Florida (JA) inspires and prepares youth to succeed in a global economy. JA provides real-world training in financial literacy including budgeting, spending, investing and the use of credit; offers cutting-edge skill-building opportunities that enable young people to explore meaningful, productive careers; teaches students how to start businesses; and introduces entrepreneurial values that strengthen workplaces. Last year, with the help of over 7,100 trained corporate and community volunteers, JA delivered over 20 various programs to almost 50,000 students in classrooms throughout Broward and south Palm Beach counties and at JA World Huizenga Center at the Lillian S. Wells Pavilion, a first-class facility housing JA BizTown and JA Finance Park. For more information about Junior Achievement of South Florida, visit www.JASouthFlorida.org.

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 more than 4.8 million students per year in over 100 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.2 million students served by operations in 100 other countries worldwide. Junior Achievement USA is a member of JA Worldwide. Visit www.JA.org for more information.

Two Schools Compete at National Student Leadership Summit
read more

Sea the World Storefront to be Revealed in JA Finance Park

New Generation of Youth to be Introduced to the Plethora of Careers Available in South Florida’s Most Lucrative Job Market

Fort Lauderdale, FL – April 19, 2019: South Florida’s marine industry is a 12 billion/year economic engine that provides the tri-county with 142,000 careers/jobs. In an industry where the skilled trades and specialized career tracks are crucial to its vitality, the maritime community is facing a workforce that’s aging out with skilled labor being very hard to find. Understanding the need to keep the industry thriving with a new generation of workers, Advanced Mechanical Enterprises/AMESOLUTIONS.COM, and 23 marine industry companies have joined forces with Junior Achievement of South Florida.

On May 1,2019, Junior Achievement of South Florida will unveil the Marine Industry Storefront, Sea the World, in the Patten Family Finance Park located at JA World Huizenga Center at the Lillian S. Well Pavilion. Each year more than 20,000 eighth grade students from Broward and south Palm Beach Counties learn how financial decisions will impact their lives. These include expenses related to family health care, real estate and home improvements, automobiles, insurance, entertainment, education, and purchasing items such as clothing, furniture and groceries.

Prior to visiting JA Finance Park, students engage in a comprehensive classroom curriculum that teaches them about finances, careers, income, expenses, savings and credit. This program helps students recognize that their education decisions affect their career options and have an impact on their potential income and quality of life. At the end of the classroom instruction, students visit JA Finance Park and put what they learned into action by managing a real world inspired personal budget based on local careers in a simulated city. Students are guided by trained volunteers.

“As an owner/operator of a small business invested in the maritime world, I’ve seen first hand how difficult it is to find skilled labor to meet our business growth,” said Christine Battles, CAO, Advanced Mechanical Enterprises/AMESOLUTIONS.COM. “Our industry is a gold mine of opportunities for the next generation. I’ve made a personal commitment to inspire their interest in our field, which, will in turn, maintain the maritime industry as a thriving economic force in the state. Our JA storefront is a major step towards fulfilling this initiative.”

Sea the World is composed of nine walls representing engine room specialists, yachting professionals, shipyard trade workers and other areas like marina management, boat sales, boat building to name a few. Advanced Mechanical Enterprises/AMESOLUTIONS.COM with the following 23 companies, raised over $130,000 for the buildout and curriculum development: Maritime Professional Training, Pier 66 Marina, The Triton (newspaper), IGY Marinas, Marine Industries Association of South Florida, Palladium Technologies LLC, Aere Marine Group, FB Marine Group, Derecktor Shipyards, Global Marine Travel, Lauderdale Marine Center, Luxury Home Consultants, AdvantageServices.Net, MHG Insurance Brokers, Palmdale Oil Company, RPM Diesel Engines Co., Viking Crew, Ward’s Marine Electric, Water Taxi, Wright Maritime Group, Roscioli Yachting Center, Elite Marine AC and Universal Marine Center. The participating parties are now transitioning into phase 2 of the execution process which will possibly involve custom boat tables, piling with rope, a fighting chair, and other marine themed elements to complete the look and feel of the Marine Industry Storefront.

Media: Please join us May 1, from 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM for a tour through the space, photo opportunities, and a reception with champagne, light appetizers and announcements.

“We are so thrilled to have such a vital industry represented in JA World Huizenga Center at the Lillian S. Wells Pavilion,” Laurie Sallarulo, President and CEO, Junior Achievement of South Florida

About Junior Achievement of South Florida

Junior Achievement of South Florida (JA) inspires and prepares youth to succeed in a global economy. JA provides real-world training in financial literacy including budgeting, spending, investing and the use of credit; offers cutting-edge skill-building opportunities that enable young people to explore meaningful, productive careers; teaches students how to start businesses; and introduces entrepreneurial values that strengthen workplaces. Last year, with the help of over 7,100 trained corporate and community volunteers, JA delivered over 20 various programs to almost 50,000 students in classrooms throughout Broward and south Palm Beach counties and at JA World Huizenga Center at the Lillian S. Wells Pavilion, a first-class facility housing JA BizTown and JA Finance Park. For more information about Junior Achievement of South Florida, visit JASouthFlorida.org.

Contact: Joanna Ramirez
(954) 764-2678
Joanna@AMEsolutions.com

Sea the World Storefront to be Revealed in JA Finance Park
read more