PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE FROM JOSEPH A. PERI
The reason Junior Achievement exists, why we are all part of this organization, is because we want to make an impact on the lives and future of the young people we serve. In so doing, we believe we are also positively affecting the economic vitality of our communities.
The 2010-2011 fiscal and school year has been a year of innovation for Junior Achievement of New York (JA New York). We’ve spent time looking closely at how we work with our partners and supporters to better serve the students we reach. Our programs’ focus has shifted to delivering educational experiences that provide deeper and higher impact learning opportunities for young people. In addition, we’ve maximized resources to strengthen high yield partnerships.
As the world changes around us, and the challenges that face us become greater, we are constantly reminded that achievement can’t wait. Our young people need us now. This growing urgency has inspired us to provide multiple opportunities for kids to experience JA in a deeper and more transformative way. Like any successful organization, we are constantly evolving, learning and growing to become more effective. This year’s annual report theme, “impact”, constitutes a real-time, real-world snapshot of our work, our support community and the outcomes and influence of the programs we deliver on the students we serve.
Highlights of the 2010-2011 school year included some important milestones:
- With your support we provided 470,000 hours of college and career-readiness, financial literacy and entrepreneurship education programming to K-12 students across NYC and Long Island
- We recruited, trained and activated more than 5,000 volunteers, providing JA programming to 67,000 students
- We partnered with a total of 264 New York City and Long Island schools
- We increased the average student experience by approximately one hour (moving from six to seven hours)
- We increased the number of students participating in JA’s work readiness and career exploration Job Shadow programs by 40%
- We engaged 6,000 student participants in our high impact capstone programs JA Finance Park and the high school Business Plan Competition
Through strategic partnerships, with organizations like the Museum of American Finance and iMentor, we’ve been able to provide more resources that strengthen our program outcomes. And we have raised visibility and awareness of the JA brand in New York City and Long Island as a trusted and leading provider of economic empowerment education programs.
With our expansion into social media, the quality and frequency of our constituent communications has graduated to another level. Now we are able to connect with a greater number of people in real time, in a more cost effective and efficient way. Most important, we are able to reach our community through channels you use. Our push to drive efficiencies while providing value continues with our choice to deliver this year’s annual report to you in a new digital format. Now the story of JA New York can be accessed and shared by thousands more people. As a result, the opportunity to cultivate more volunteer and resource leads will multiply in the new school year. Now that’s impact.
Enormous strides have been made in proving the efficacy and value of JA program participation on students’ ability to successfully graduate from high school. According to a study conducted by America’s Promise Alliance and Johns Hopkins University, one of the leading reasons dropouts cite for leaving school is that they cannot see the connection between what they are learning in the classroom and how it applies to their own lives and career dreams. JA programs help students make a connection between what they learn in school and how it is applied in the real world. JA New York was one of four markets chosen to participate in Junior Achievement USA’s Graduation Pathways study led by the Bridgespan Group. Our participation in this important evaluation study will yield stronger programs that empower young people to own their economic success. Important key findings have already begun to emerge from the first phase of the study, and we are excited about what we will learn in the future.
Our progress in 2010-11 is part of a larger story, in which JA New York is moving forward as a stronger, more mission focused, impact and data driven organization. We hope you enjoy reading about our successful year, which is as much your achievement as it is ours. We thank you for your support, your enthusiasm and your passion to serve the students of New York City and Long Island.
Joseph A. Peri
Junior Achievement of New York