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Toronto Catholic District School Board

Junior Achievement Student M​anagement Training: Teaching the Next Generation

By: Margret Lo, Student Reporter

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(Photo Courtesy of Junior Achievement Central Ontario)

 

On November 25, two Loretto Abbey students attended the Junior Achievement’s Student Management Training after being elected as executives for their companies. Junior Achievement is an 18-week program that allows high school students to experience the process of creating a business. In this time period, students are elected into executive roles, help create products, sell them, and can even earn a profit. Kayla Lewis, a grade 11 student, was elected Vice President of Finance for her company and I, Margret Lo, will be serving as Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility in my company.

 

A major part of the Junior Achievement’s Student Management training involved listening to keynote speaker Xerxes Cooper, the Chief Financial Officer of IBM Canada. Cooper shared with students the idea of disruption, a concept that occurs when businesses “ruthlessly prioritize a customer’s experience.” From there, he elaborated on the importance of proactivity and further explained that as business professionals, we “don’t just compete, [we] be the best.” Business is about going above and beyond; it is about growth and development.

 

The rest of the day applied the knowledge that Cooper provided, making executives participate in a group competition. This competition challenged each company to develop a marketing scheme, which hoped to increase participation in the Junior Achievement Company Program. The teams with the best idea then pitched to a panel of judges. From these, finalists were chosen and were able to present during the closing remarks. Kayla Lewis felt that these “exercises… are what help build the best decision making skills.”

 

This day was incredible, showcasing past Junior Achievement alumni and the many opportunities that we, as company members, are made available to. We were able to learn about our roles as executives.  As Cooper eloquently put, in your Junior Achievement journey, “you’re going to take on challenges… [yet] the true limitation for success is you.”

 

Junior Achievement is all about possibilities and preparing students for work in the business world. The current Junior Achievement Company Program is underway, but students can register for next year’s program starting in September 2018! In the meantime, support your local Junior Achievement companies by buying their products in the next few months. If you wish to partake in other business activities, visit Junior Achievement Central Ontario’s website and discover their many immersive programs.