All posts tagged: problem solving

WSVN: New Rick Case Interactive Storefront

New Rick Case interactive storefront gives students real-world experience into the auto industry

COCONUT CREEK, FLA. (WSVN) – South Florida students recently got a first-hand experience of what it is like to work in the auto industry.

The brand-new, state-of-the-art interactive Rick Case storefront is part of “JA BizTown,” a simulated city in JA World Huizenga Center at the Lillian S. Wells Pavilion, the largest single JA facility in the world.

“Our goal was to make our storefront both engaging and educational for the students,” said President and CEO of the Rick Case Auto Group Rita Case. “We want young people to know that the auto industry is a vital part of our economy and provides great career opportunities, as well.”

JA BizTown is a collection of businesses sponsored by real local businesses, designed to demonstrate how a functioning economy works, as students play roles as executives, associates, and consumers at businesses within the town.

Click to learn more about JA BizTown.

WSVN: New Rick Case Interactive Storefront
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10 Million Reasons for Work and Career Readiness Education

Author: Jack E. Kosakowski, President & CEO of Junior Achievement USA

Recently, and for the first time, the number of job openings in the United States exceeded 10 million, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary (JOLTS) Report. At the same time, there are more than 7 million who are eligible to work but who are unemployed.

Over the past several months, there has been a great deal of conversation around what’s happening in the American workforce. This includes “The Great Resignation,” where record numbers of workers are quitting their jobs, citing everything from pandemic-related burnout and lagging wages to a complete reassessment of what a job should be in light of everything our society has experienced recently. When you hear these accounts, it’s natural to assume that this is a short-term issue that will work itself out over time as COVID-19 becomes more manageable and people get to the point where they must work to provide for themselves and their families.

The fact is, there is a longer-term problem at hand. Even before the pandemic, employers were struggling to find qualified workers. This had been an issue for several years. However, the difference between now and then is that record numbers of qualified professionals, primarily Baby Boomers, accelerated their plans for retirement during the pandemic. Unfortunately, while one of the most skilled generations in our nation has begun to move out of the workforce en masse, there aren’t similarly skilled younger workers prepared to take their place. More than anything else, this reality could help explain why there are 10 million job openings in need of qualified applicants and so few who can fill them.

The question is, “Why aren’t today’s younger workers more inclined or better prepared to take on these roles?” Ironically, Millennials are one of the most educated generations in history. Unfortunately, according to a 2015 study from the Educational Testing Service (ETS), that education failed to sufficiently cover critical skills needed for employment, including STEM, communication, and critical problem-solving, for too many members of that generation. Additionally, in terms of career aspirations, a 2019 survey by Morning Consult showed that 86 percent of teens and young adults were interested in “Social Media Influencer” as a career choice.

Now, this isn’t to say every teen or young adult is on YouTube, TikTok, or Instagram trying to be the next Kim Kardashian or Jake Paul. For instance, the top college majors as of 2021 still focus on critically needed professions like business, healthcare, engineering, and education. And there are millions of Millennials and Gen-Zers who are finding work and career success in those and many other fields. But when our young people look to career role models, should it be surprising that those role models come from something they are extremely familiar with, like social media, and not engineering, for instance?

The truth is, as a society, we need to do a better job of tying education to work and career outcomes so that we don’t end up with such a significant disparity between people looking for jobs and jobs looking for people. This includes helping young people draw the connection between what they are learning in school and its application to success outside of the classroom. This means helping students explore their interests, talents, and strengths and linking them to an educational pathway that results in the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and competencies needed to find meaningful and rewarding jobs and careers. This also means putting them in contact with successful professionals in their communities who can serve as role models to inspire them to be the next engineer, technician, educator, skilled tradesperson, or physician, and not necessarily the next social media star.

Junior Achievement learning experiences do just that. As the result of JA’s work and career readiness pathways approach, which complements similar coursework in financial literacy and entrepreneurship, our program alumni tell us that Junior Achievement played a significant role in increasing their educational attainment, professional development, and career satisfaction. Part of our educational delivery includes engaging professionals from the local community as volunteers to deliver our learning experiences while sharing their work and career journeys with students. The combination of our volunteer delivery model and curriculum has been shown to inspire and prepare young people to find work and career success as adults.

10 Million Reasons for Work and Career Readiness Education
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High School JA Business Receives Biggest Sale of Year

Contact: Karen Jurgens, Business Technology Instructor
Atlantic Technical College & Technical High School
4700 Coconut Creek Pkwy.
Coconut Creek, FL 33066
(754) 321-5100, Email:

Coconut Creek, Florida –  NobleMasque, a Junior Achievement Fellows student company at Atlantic Technical College & Technical High School in Coconut Creek announced today that it has made its largest sale ever, more than doubling its total revenue for the school year. The order of nearly $1,000 for custom COVID-19 face masks is for Junior Achievement of South Florida for Girls Rule, an upcoming event for high school girls.

NobleMasque is a high school student-run company for the school year 2020-21 that sells comfortable, fashionable and reusable cotton and silk face masks. It is run by high school seniors in the Business Management & Analysis and Drafting programs. These young entrepreneurs manage their own marketing, sales, accounting, supply and production, and distribution. They earn money, pay expenses and keep their profits after donating a small portion of sales to Junior Achievement of South Florida and a charity of their choice.

When asked why NobleMasque was selected as the mask supplier for this event, Jill Reipsa, Junior Achievement’s Director of Classroom and Community Programs and Martha Rios, Director of Entrepreneurship Initiatives agreed. “We chose to work with NobleMasque because of the quick response time, the professional communication we received, and their ability accommodate our needs.  It was such a pleasure working with Javon Peter from NobleMasque.  I loved that they offered their suggestions on placing our design on the masks.  The payment process was very easy.  We look forward to receiving our masks and sharing them with our girls that attend the Girls Rule event.” they added.

“Having this opportunity means a lot to us. We have worked really hard throughout these past months and we are extremely grateful that NobleMasque is able to complete this huge order for the Girls Rule event held by Junior Achievement,” said Vincenzo Alfonso Feliz.

Student Alejandra Meneses feels they were selected because NobleMasque emphasizes quality work and customer service. “All year our company strived and excelled in all areas from getting the best quality mask to packaging and delivery. We pride ourselves on our customer service and having our customers satisfied by resolving any problems they may encounter and making their purchase an enjoyable one,” she said.

NobleMasque has not let the pandemic slow them down. As taught to do in uncertain times, they “pivoted” from in-person sales and shifted their focus to the internet. They have been very active on social media and created their own website to sell their products.

The promotion has paid off. Arif Ali said “We take great pride in being selected for this big order. It has increased our connections and given us the opportunity to put the company’s name out there giving us an advantage over other companies,” he said.

“This year’s ATC Junior Achievement Fellows student-led company, NobleMasque, formed a timely, affordable business model to offer a product everyone needs in these COVID-19 times, a mask,” said Sandra Welch, Commissioner, City of Coconut Creek and Junior Achievement Fellows mentor who worked with the students almost weekly along with Ken Wingerter and Andrew Mazlin both of Wells Fargo.  “The students were focused on a mask which was eco and skin friendly.  I couldn’t be prouder of all of them, and how they came together to work as a team,” she said.

“What a great way to end the year for this hard-working group of young business professionals as they get set to graduate in June.” said Karen Jurgens, Atlantic Technical College & Technical High School Instructor and Lead Teacher for Junior Achievement Fellows.

For more information about NobleMasque, click here.

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 Follow JA on social media @jasouthflorida.

About JA Fellows:
JA Fellows is the “GO TO” business incubator through a learning-by-doing entrepreneurial and business experience for middle and high school students. Students gain real-world business experience by working in groups of 20-25, conceptualizing, capitalizing, and managing their own small businesses. Throughout this real-life entrepreneurship experience, students develop communication, financial management, problem-solving, collaboration and time management skills, just to name a few. Mentors work in teams of 4-6, coaching students through the process of starting and running a small business. “Spark Tank” competitions (Shark Tank-like events) are judged by local business leaders. At year-end, companies participate in a local competition for award, and a chance to compete in a national competition, National Student Leadership Summit (NSLS), in Washington, D.C. in June. JA is proud to have two teams compete nationally in 20172018, and 2019. Alpha Solutions was named 2017 National “Company of the Year,” Pure Serenity was “Company of the Year” 2nd place in 2019 and Germ Genie” was “Company of the Year” 2nd place in 2020 during the first virtual NSLS competition. Learn more at

High School JA Business Receives Biggest Sale of Year
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