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While COVID-19 stay at home orders continue throughout the state and country, the volunteers who often help support and drive the missions of non-profit organizations have limited opportunities to give back. However, Junior Achievement (JA) of Central Indiana has developed a virtual career exploration program to engage both students and volunteers during these unprecedented times.

This week, the country will celebrate the millions of individuals who dedicate their time to improve our communities during National Volunteer Week, April 19-25. In celebration of its volunteers, JA, an organization that uniquely prepares young people to find and create a pathway to future success, will launch their new virtual career exploration program for those looking to volunteer remotely.

“Many Hoosiers are asking themselves, ‘What can I do to help make a difference while at home?’” said Jennifer Burk, president and CEO of JA of Central Indiana. “Junior Achievement has an answer, and we’re proud to offer this meaningful opportunity for our volunteers to continue inspiring students and keep them future-focused during social distancing. We’re very excited about the potential for young people in central Indiana to benefit.”

The online program, called ‘My Career Journey,’ is offered to middle and high school students.

“Workforce development and serving our communities are two important missions of Republic Airways, and through Junior Achievement of Central Indiana, we work toward achieving both,” said Amy Arnell, director of corporate and community responsibility for Republic Airways. “This initiative inspired several of our associates to share their career journeys and advice, and we’re hopeful that because of it, a few more children dream a little bigger and a little higher in their future careers.”

Mentors taking part in the program share a five to 10-minute video discussing their career journey and how they got where they are today. Students complete JA coursework and assessments that introduce them to industries where their skills and interests may be best suited. They then have the opportunity to “e-meet” volunteers through the submitted videos to learn more about specific careers.

“Our organization is forever grateful for the thousands of individuals who dedicate their time to serve today’s youth,” said Burk. “Junior Achievement programs are designed to inspire students to dream big and reach their full potential but are most effective when delivered by a caring volunteer. We believe that ‘if you can see it, you can be it,’ and volunteers truly serve as role models.”

Junior Achievement partners with more than 200 local schools in 35 districts to deliver K-12 programs that reach nearly 40,000 students with the help of more than 4,600 adult volunteers annually.

“Thank you to the thousands of volunteers that JA and our local youth rely on each year. We are honored to celebrate each of you this week,” states Alyssa Andis, vice president of education for JA of Central Indiana.

If you would like to sign up and volunteer, or to learn more about the free online resources JA is offering in response to COVID-19, please contact Junior Achievement at info@jaindy.org or visit their website at https://www.juniorachievement.org/web/ja-indy/volunteer.

 

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About Junior Achievement of Central Indiana

Junior Achievement of Central Indiana, in partnership with the business and education communities, empowers young people to own their future success. JA educates and inspires young people in the areas of career exploration, employability/life skills, entrepreneurship, financial literacy and philanthropy through hands-on, experiential learning opportunities for children in kindergarten through high school.  For more opportunities to get involved or volunteer visit: jaindy.org.

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