HOW JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT OF SOUTH FLORIDA LIT UP THE LIFE AND DREAMS OF A STRANAHAN HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR
South Florida Business & Wealth
By Drew Limsky
Junior Achievement gave 17-year-old Jayden Bonhomme something that school could not. And that’s the point. This is a story of burgeoning self-esteem,validation, and an epiphany that his varied interests could lead to a viable career path.
Through its Youth Employment program, which is part of JA Career Bound, the organization helps teenagers prepare for the workforce. They learn interviewing skills, presentation skills, collaboration, conflict resolution, networking, how different companies in varied sectors function—in short, the real world.
“Research says that students graduate from high school knowing only about five to eight jobs,” says Laurie Sallarulo, president and CEO of JA of South Florida. The program serves to remedy that. For Bonhomme, JA—and Career Bound, in particular—made him envision a future as a health care administrator. “I became acquainted with Junior Achievement in high school during my freshman year,” Bonhomme recalls. “I remember everyone was getting dressed up for mock interviews, and I thought, I want to be a part of that.” The first time Bonhomme walked into JA’s Town Square, for a field trip during his sophomore year, he noted the breadth of the organization’s reach—various colleges, Broward Health, the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, the FBI and the military were all represented.