JA Job Shadow gives Jacksonville students a glimpse of the “real world”

JA Job Shadow offers students a unique opportunity: a visit to a professional work environment and insights into how to find and keep a fulfilling career.

Recently our JA Boy$ program partnered with Jacksonville schools serving boys and young men to provide a JA Job Shadow experience for their students.

Students from Valor Academy visited the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta – Jacksonville Branch and Sally Corporation



Students from Young Men’s Leadership Academy visited Florida State College at Jacksonville Advanced Technology Center


Students from Young Men’s Leadership Academy visited Florida Blue


7th graders from the Young Men’s Leadership Academy visited three departments at Florida Blue – Workforce Management, IT Command Center, and the Special Investigation Unit.  The students enjoyed touring the beautiful campus and even had lunch at the Four Seasons Café on-site.  Special thanks to Market President Darnell Smith, Board Member Bob Wall, Paul Stallings and Deborah Phelps of ENAABLE (Empowering Network of African-Americas Building, Leading, Embracing).


About JA Boy$

JA Boy$ serves as a bridge between JA’s real-world programs and all-male classroom environment. For more info on this program and how to get involved, click here.

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JA Boy$ Reverse Job Shadow at Young Men’s Leadership Academy

JA Boy$ Reverse Job Shadow

Groups of boys at Young Men’s Leadership Academy spoke with business men from the community and learned about potential career paths.

View photo album on our Facebook page.

Junior Achievement’s Reverse Job Shadow events provide local businesses with a chance to give back to the community and invest in possible future employees, and students become more work-ready by learning about the career opportunities available to them in the Jacksonville area and beyond.

Stay connected: Facebook // Twitter // LinkedIn // Google+ // Website

For students looking to change their future, Junior Achievement provides an answer

JA Reverse Job Shadow

Fresh Path participants at JA Reverse Job Shadow on June 17.

We teamed up with FreshMinistries back in April for JA Reverse Job Shadow, but June 17 let us become involved for the first time with their newest program, Fresh Path.

Fresh Path is an opportunity for core-city youth to change their future by providing them with life-skills, job training and health, wellness and nutrition education.

Some people might look at these young people and see a challenging road ahead; FreshMinistries decided to do something about it and Fresh Path was born.

On this balmy summer evening, eight JA volunteers gathered at FreshMinistries’ Weaver Center for Community Outreach to bring JA Reverse Job Shadow to the Fresh Path participants.

Each volunteer took a table and set out materials related to their job. The students gathered towards the back of the room, waiting for a couple more to arrive before starting. Many looked down at their phones with headphones on that drowned out the rest of the room.

At 6:15 p.m. the event began. The students would spend eight minutes at each station then rotate to the next. The volunteer-to-student ratio worked out so the students could talk one-on-one with each professional, with one table having two students.

Just a few minutes in, the room had an elevated energy about it. Students were making eye contact, asking questions, smiling and looking like they were enjoying themselves. When “time” was called, no student was quick to get up and move because they were so engaged in conversation.

“A little light bulb seemed to go off in each of them,” said Don Covey, retired financial professional. “I think the most rewarding part of the evening was that each person I listened to seemed to understand that hard work and education will be the key to their success.”

“Ryan and I were impressed with the way they handled themselves and showed interest in what we had to say,” said Kaytee Esser, Gilbane Building Company. “I hope that they all aim high and trust that they can reach their dreams and beyond. They have a lot to offer the world. I am looking forward to what they bring to the future.”

JA Reverse Job Shadow

Sonya Snyder, Jacksonville Business Journal

JA Reverse Job Shadow

Don Covey, retired financial professional

JA Reverse Job Shadow

Ryan Sitnik and Kaytee Esser, Gilbane Southeast

We would like to thank the following volunteers for participating in this event:

Don Covey – Retired, Finance
Michael Dwyer – Primerica Financial
Kaytee Esser, Ryan Sitnik – Gilbane Southeast
Mark Ross – U.S. Navy
Rachael Sellers – PWC
Sonya Snyder – Jacksonville Business Journal
Howard Taylor – Retired, Insurance
Daniel Young – PA Worldwide Inc.

You can view all the photos from this event in our Facebook photo album.

Click here to learn more about FreshMinistries’ Fresh Path program.

JA Reverse Job Shadow introduces students to careers by bringing the real world to their schools or community sites. To learn more about this unique program and how you can get involved, please click here.

JA Students visit Microsoft Store in Jacksonville

Sandalwood High School students visited the Microsoft Store at St. Johns Town Center as part of JA Job Shadow.

They interacted with store employees, got a tour of the store and learned about Microsoft as a corporation.

Students received job advice that applies no matter what career field they choose, such as the importance of communication and team work.

Check out their experience!

Sandalwood High School seniors experience JA Job Shadow at the Microsoft Store

Twenty-one seniors from Sandalwood High School visited the Microsoft Store at St. Johns Town Center today for JA Job Shadow. Prior to their visit they completed classroom lessons about resumes, job hunting and career exploration.

Today they experienced those concepts first-hand when they interacted with Microsoft store employees, learning about the jobs and careers available at Microsoft and what it takes to successfully land a job.

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An ice breaker activity had each student name their favorite cereal, car, and ideal career. Several students expressed an interest in the technology field as a career – making their experience at the Microsoft store that much more beneficial.

The students learned about the different store positions and qualities Microsoft looks for in employees. Even if they are not interested in a career with Microsoft, the students were able to understand the importance of team work in any workplace.

For the students who were unsure about which career to pursue, the Microsoft employees inspired them to seek careers associated with what they’re interested in.

To round out their visit to the Microsoft store the students had the opportunity to demo the latest phones, tablets and Xbox games.

To learn more about JA Job Shadow please visit our website.

Thoughtful student thank-you note

MHS student thank you letter

JA volunteers truly do inspire and make a difference.

We recently held a “Reverse Job Shadow” day at Mandarin High School.

Students walked table to table to interview professionals from an array of fields, asking questions for 7 minutes then moving to the next table.

We received a stack of thank-you notes at our office from these students.

Wow! Reading through the letters, they really enjoyed talking to the adults from the different career fields.

One student’s note in particular demonstrates the power of role models and that there are some very bright young people out there who will no doubt be successful in the path they choose (See above photo).

The note reads:

“Thank you for your time in coming to Mandarin High School for the Junior Achievement event. Although I don’t plan on entering the medical field any time soon, it was fascinating talking to you about what you did for work. I am entering the scientific field though, microbiology to be exact, and I am doing it for the same reasons you did and that is to make people’s lives better. I may not be doing heart surgery or fixing broken arms, but I plan on making medicine and pushing what we know even further, in hopes that one day it will all pay off in the long run. Like you said, the benefits definately [sic] outweigh the risks. Once again, I appreciate you coming for speaking at the event and taking your time out of the schedule for it.”

If you are interested in sharing your career with students, please contact us for the next available date! 

Call Tiffany Mackey at 904-398-9944 ext.230 or email Tiffany@jajax.com.

Visit our website: www.jajax.com

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Middle school students sit down and chat with area professionals during JA’s “Reverse Job Shadow”

dec18 job shadowJacksonville area professionals met with students at Ft. Caroline Middle School today for Junior Achievement’s “Reverse Job Shadow.”

Students were split into groups and sat down with each adult, asking questions and writing down answers to pertaining to their jobs. Students switched tables after seven minutes were up.

The following professionals shared their job-related knowledge with students:

Jonathan Bishop– Junior Achievement’s JA Boy$ program
Melanie Black– Student Futures
James Daniel– engineer
Andre Gaulard– retired chiropractor
Ron Little– Florida Department of Transportation
Angela Spears– City of Jacksonville
Deb Thrift– Mary Kay
Brad Williams– Dell

Are you a professional who would like to share your expertise and experience with students? Visit our website or contact Tiffany Mackey (904-398-9944 ext.230 / tiffany@jajax.com) today and learn how you can become involved!

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.