Junior Achievement brings Career Day to Fletcher High

Career Day

JAX Chamber Beaches Division and Junior Achievement host JA Career Day for the Interact Club at Fletcher High School

Over 45 Fletcher High School students explored career options and started planning for their future during JA Career Day on Tuesday, June 3, 2014. In its third year, JA Career Day is held by the JAX Chamber Beaches Division in partnership with Fletcher High School’s Interact Club and Junior Achievement.

Support from the Hayes Family Foundation made possible the day’s activities. Fifteen professionals spanning career fields from Void Magazine, advertising, professional writers, IT, insurance, finance, banking, Shore Things retail shop, criminal defense, Nova Southeastern University and the military came out to serve as mentors, sharing career advice and answering job-related questions to help prepare high schools students for the road ahead.

Each business professional was assigned a table at which students conducted “reverse interviews” asking questions about job responsibilities, what a typical day is like and how much education is required to work in that field. After approximately ten minutes students rotated tables, allowing them to interview a diverse group of representatives from businesses and discover jobs they may one day be interested in working.

“With over 45 students in attendance, we can confidently say that this year’s event was our best ever!” exclaimed Amanda Patch, Manager, Beaches Division, JAX Chamber.

The number of students participating in JA Career Day doubled from last year. Jenny McKeithen of BB&T and Karen Hughes of SunTrust Bank, both of JAX Beaches Chamber of Commerce Community Involvement, helped organize this event in which students learn the importance of decision making and setting goals.

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At JA’s Career Day 8th Grade Students face the question ‘What do I want to be when I grow up?’

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More than 200 eighth grade students at Dupont Middle School participated in a Career Day on February 14 organized by Rotary Club of Mandarin and Junior Achievement. Twenty adults from an array of professions answered questions and gave advice during the “reverse-job shadow” format.

“We really encourage students to think about what they want to do, such as planning which electives to take in high school that will support their career interests,” said eighth grade history teacher Lynn Mickler. “This is perfect because it gives them a firsthand idea of salaries and education needed.” She added, “Kids who are less than interested in school are taking notes, writing everything down, really getting into it…the hands-on aspect of it is really great.”

Rose Marie Preddy is a member of the Mandarin Rotary and helped organize this event that will benefit the entire eighth grade at Dupont. She explained there is a good sampling of different career paths including entrepreneurs, technical jobs which require no college degree, professional careers and even dream jobs: WJXT Channel 4’s Staci Spanos was present to talk about being a news anchor and the Oakland Athletics’ John Wasdin answered questions about what it takes to be a Major League Baseball player.

According to Daniel Locke, an entrepreneur who started a roofing company, he wanted students to understand that quality service will get them far if they’re interested in starting a company in the service industry. “In the service industry, you don’t have to be smart—you just have to be better than everyone else” he said. “If one kid gets what I’m saying, that makes it worth it.”

Junior Achievement aims to excite students to dream big and reach their potential. Students gained inspiration after interviewing the various professionals—police officer, architect, public relations, nurse, prosecutor, sales, author, banker and construction are just a sample of careers they had to explore.

When asked if this day helped him decide what he wants to do as a potential career, Benjamin, an 8th grade student replied, “Yes; It showed me how important of a decision it is to decide what I want to do in my life. The baseball player told me that grades are important—good grades will get you far!”

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Interested in sharing your career experience with young people? Junior Achievement needs people like you to volunteer! Contact Tiffany Mackey at 904-398-9944 ext. 230 or email Tiffany@jajax.com.

Junior Achievement receives Starbucks Foundation grant

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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.

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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.

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“[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.”

 

AT&T Job Shadow

On November 14, 89 high school students had the rare opportunity to participate in the Junior Achievement/AT&T Job Shadow.Students experienced first-hand what it’s like in the workplace when they shadowed AT&T employees at their local site.

Students interacted with employees in jobs ranging from customer service representatives, product and service managers, and marketing and advertising executives. They learned what type of post-secondary education and/or training is necessary for that job and about the diverse career opportunities available to them at AT&T.

Prior to this visit students completed Junior Achievement curriculum in work-readiness education and career perspectives, helping to identify potential careers while learning about interviewing, resume writing, and general job skills awareness.

Excerpts from participant letters about their experience at AT&T.

Excerpts from participant letters about their experience at AT&T.