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Junior Achievement of the Upper Midwest, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Education, Youth Development - Business

Mission: We are the passionate people behind a movement that seeks to educate and inspire young people to value free enterprise, business and economics to improve the quality of their lives.

Programs: Ja traditional in-school programs:jaum reached more than 159,800 students during the 2014-2015 school year with 1. 1 million hours of programming. We achieve this reach in part through our age-appropriate classroom curriculum that begins in elementary school. Students learn how they can impact the world around them as individuals, workers, and consumers. Programming continues through middle and high school, where we focus on key content areas of financial literacy, college and career readiness, and entrepreneurship. Elementary school programs: ja's elementary school programs are the foundation of our curricula. The kindergarten through fifth grade themes, as well as after-school and capstone experiences, work to change students' lives by helping them learn the basic concepts of business and understand the important role of education in preparing for a future career. Each volunteer-led program consists of five lessons. Middle school programs: the middle grades programs build on concepts the students learned in elementary school and help teens make difficult decisions about how to best prepare for their educational and professional future. The programs supplement standard social studies curricula and develop communication skills that are essential to success in the business world. Each volunteer-led program consists of six lessons. High school programs: as high school students begin to position themselves for their future, there are many unanswered questions about what lies ahead. Junior achievement's high school programs help students make informed, intelligent decisions about their future, and foster skills through important entrepreneurial concepts that will be valuable in the business world. Each volunteer-led program consists of five to 12 lessons.

ja finance park:ja finance park introduces students to the world of business through personal financial planning and career exploration. This program is designed to be taught to middle and high school students by classroom teachers. The program culminates with a visit to our business simulation lab located at our maplewood headquarters or via virtual simulation, where students put into practice what they're learned about economic options and the principles of budgeting. Assisted by their teachers and trained volunteers, students have the opportunity to develop and commit to a personal budget. At ja biztown, elementary school students get to be adults for the day. They operate banks, manage restaurants, write checks and vote for mayor. This program combines in-class learning with a day-long visit to this fully-interactive simulated free market facility. Ja biztown helps students connect the dots between what they learn in school and the real world. Through daily lessons, hands-on activities, and active participation in this simulated community, students develop a strong understanding of the relationship between what they learn in school and their successful participation in a global economy.

ja out of school time:jaums out of school time work focuses on collaborations with other youth serving organizations to deliver ja programming through new channels. Partnerships with the ymca, girl scouts, promise neighborhoods, and minneapolis public schools summer school program are examples of such collaborations where ja is reaching students beyond the classroom. Leveraging the benefits of out of school time programming in addressing the achievement gap, as well as supporters of the organizations we are partnering with, will create funding potential.

jaum provides post-secondary scholarships to encourage and allow students to continue their education after high school. Many of our high school programs involved some form of competition, with the winning students and/or teams receiving scholarships based on their performance. We are fortunate to be able to offer these opportunities to students through the generosity of our sponsors and partners.

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