The Starbucks Foundation has awarded Junior Achievement of North Florida a Youth Leadership Grant in the amount of $10,000. This grant will support the JA Work$ program which provides high school students with work-related training and on-the-job experience.
“It is our goal to equip these students with work readiness skills to be become productive citizens,” said VP of Programs Tiffany Mackey.
More than 100 high school students will participate. These students will be recruited from Title I schools that are located in underserved communities. Students will also be recruited from our own JA Boy$ program which focuses on bringing financial literacy, workforce preparation and entrepreneurship programs to underprivileged boys and young men on Jacksonville’s Northside and Westside.
As with all JA initiatives, trained volunteers will facilitate the program. Volunteers will be recruited from local companies including Starbucks to teach two programs to JA Work$ students: JA Career Success and JA Personal Finance.
Armed with the knowledge imparted by these programs, JA Work$ participants will be provided a “job”: teaching Junior Achievement classes to nearly 1,000 elementary school students. Before they start, they will go through job application, resume and interview training under the guidance of volunteers. JA Work$ students will be provided a small stipend of $150 upon completion of their “job” and much like a real job, will be evaluated and receive feedback.
This workforce experience will help to eliminate the unknowns of job application and the workplace. Graduates of JA Work$ will understand what it takes to find and secure a job—a process that will no longer be foreign to these students.
“[JA Work$] is the perfect combination of taking theories learned in the classroom and applying them practically,” said JA Boy$ Program Manager Jonathan Bishop. “We want to give the student participants a peek into the real-world and what it takes to succeed.”