Junior Achievement expands to region
A national business and economics education program may expand to Mesa, Delta and Montrose counties as soon as this spring.
Junior Achievement of Southern Colorado Director of Education Nancy Brown will visit the three counties this week to encourage local schools and business people to participate in the educational program. Junior Achievement has existed in southern Colorado since 1954, but the nearest programming is offered in Gunnison and Garfield counties. A grant awarded this fall by Denver-based charitable organization The Daniels Fund will allow the educational program to expand into the central Western Slope and the Eastern Plains.
The program is free for schools and places volunteers from the local business community into kindergarten through 12th-grade classrooms. The volunteers teach hourlong lessons once a week for five to nine weeks, depending on grade level, using Junior Achievement curriculum. The curriculum aligns with subjects already being taught in a class and follows Colorado’s curriculum standards, according to Brown.
“The students learn age-appropriate information about how to budget, how to make choices” and other business concepts, she said.
The Daniels Fund provided approximately $100,000 to be spread over three years for Junior Achievement to branch out into western and eastern parts of the state, Brown said. “We’re hoping by the time we’re finished with the grant, we’ll have built financial support from the local business community so we’ll have stability,” Brown said.
Brown said she has invited schools in the Montrose County, Delta County and Mesa County Valley school districts to participate in the program.
Junior Achievement is open to public and private schools.
“It’s a win-win,” Brown said. “A business person brings real-world experience into the classroom and students begin to understand more about their community.”