Junior Achievement seeks sponsors for public school program

JA Inspire helps students in Duval County learn about businesses and possible careers.

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Junior Achievement of North Florida is looking for businesses to partner with the nonprofit in this year’s JA Inspire program developed for middle school students in Duval County Public Schools.

Businesses can sponsor and participate in the virtual career exploration program that introduces students to career opportunities through classroom lessons followed by a virtual career fair.

“Our community partners will be helping to educate these eighth-grade students about the different career paths available that align with each student’s interests and skills while helping teachers meet the mandate requirements that help prepare these youth for the future,” Shannon Italia, president of JA of North Florida, said in a news release.

“Last year, we had more than 55 companies that participated in the program and helped connect students to the opportunities available to them. Our program allows these young people to interact with adults and companies so they can explore a variety of potential careers. It also helps to put them on the education path to their goals before they begin their high school coursework.”

JA Inspire is the first step in Duval County Public Schools’ new Duval Ready program, launched in January 2021 and expanded to include all eighth-grade students last fall.

The program for this school year is enhanced to meet a state mandate that requires schools to provide career exploration and work readiness programs to middle school students.

JA Inspire’s new curriculum leads the students to specific lessons that fulfill the state’s mandate to provide a way for students to find a career that will suit their talents and values. The students will be exposed to careers in categories including arts and creative; business administration, finance and marketing; education and student resources; health and biomedical; human services, hospitality, tourism and sports; law, government, public safety, corrections, and security; STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics); and transportation, logistics, construction and manufacturing.

Companies interested in sponsoring and participating in JA Inspire can contact Tiffany Guthrie at 904-398-9944 ext.230 or [email protected].

More information can be found at https://secure.qgiv.com/for/jinsp2/event/851028/.

Mercedes Benz USA is this year’s impact sponsor and CSX Transportation Corp. is one of the auditorium sponsors. Opportunities are available for additional auditorium sponsors, as well as at the exhibit hall, premier booth, career starter and basic booth levels.

Since 1963, Junior Achievement of North Florida has been delivering JA learning experiences that help young people reach their potential. To learn more about Junior Achievement of North Florida, visit www.janfl.org.