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"Participating in Junior Achievement is a great way to refocus on what matters most, helping young people think of and prepare for their future."


For all the work they do in the classroom and at JA BizTown, JPMorgan Chase is Junior Achievement of Central Ohio's 2020 Volunteer of the Year. In the 2019/2020 school year, nearly 200 JPMorgan Chase teammates volunteered with JA, impacting more than 2,000 central Ohio students. We've asked them to share what volunteering with Junior Achievement means to them. 

What is JPMC's stance on giving back to the community & volunteering?
At JPMorgan Chase, we invest in our customers, employees and communities around the world to break down barriers to opportunity and create an economy that works for more people. Right now,  we are facing one of the greatest health threats of a generation, one that is impacting communities and citizens around the world. More than ever, our communities need support and resources. We not only devote financial resources, but leverage our greatest strength—our employees—to ensure those resources make a real impact on people’s lives. Each year, our employees volunteer their time and expertise to help nonprofit organizations and people in underserved neighborhoods. Employees bring forward organizations or initiatives that they’ve seen make an impact, and many of our most successful volunteer efforts begin as a grass-roots initiative. We have an incredibly active Volunteer Leadership Group that helps organize volunteer events – big and small—across Central Ohio. Our employees are truly the driving force.
What is JPMorgan Chase’s relationship with Junior Achievement of Central Ohio?
JPMorgan Chase and Junior Achievement of Central Ohio have built a long relationship over 6 years. As a company, we’re incredibly focused on supporting the workforce of the future and helping build an economy that works for more people. We look for organizations that are working to advance these efforts and Junior Achievement is a fantastic example of this work in action. We’re proud to work with them to help prepare young people for a brighter tomorrow. Our employees bring their passion and expertise to the classrooms and JA programs to make a real impact in the lives of students and families across our region. We’re thrilled to work with Junior Achievement of Central Ohio, and look forward to a continued partnership for years to come.
What does volunteering mean to JPMorgan Chase team members?
Volunteering with JA was an great experience!  Watching the students work together to create innovative business ideas was the best part. It was really so awesome to see them brainstorm, discuss and eliminate ideas, and get excited about sharing them with us. –Suzanne Polcyn
Volunteering with JA was a chance to connect with children while helping them learn about economics and leadership.  It meant so much to me to represent Chase, volunteer with young people, and make some great relationships in the process. – John Cruise
The pleasure of getting the opportunity to volunteer with other excited volunteers in front of equally excited students for a fun-filled day of learning was an experience so precious that it makes me smile every time I think back on it. I look forward to a time when I can do it again.—Eric Singer
Volunteering with JA is an amazing experience. Watching the kids’ expressions after working out a solution to a problem is what says it all for me. – Dylan Kraner
Participating in Junior Achievement is a great way to refocus on what matters most,  helping young people think of and prepare for their future.  At the same time, it ignites your creative thinking as you encourage their self-discovery and growth. – Erik Merkau
It is very rewarding…. I wish it was available in the school I attended. – Michael Rice
A fun way to spend the day, sharing my knowledge, and interacting with bright young people. – Shoba Narayanan
JA is a great experience and gives you insight into how the next generation views their world. – Mary Patrick
It’s so fulfilling and fun to watch the kids achieve results from running their business while working together and having a blast! – Amy Anangono
The experience was very eye opening and humbling. I appreciate teachers even more for what they do on a daily basis. – Breanna Mcconahy
Rewarding and puts a smile on your face! – Nicolas Kratz
“Knowledge is power” Sir Francis Bacon—It was my pleasure to present the financial education sections of the JA program to middle school future professional women and men.  A very satisfying experience.   – Lucia Santos
Volunteering with JA was a very enjoyable experience, where I was able to connect with other peers at work and touch the lives of children by just being there for them that day.  Teaching in front of kids got me out of my comfort zone but I feel proud that I was able to give my time to serve in my community.  Being able to inspire just one child that day is an accomplishment. – Nicole Alexander
Volunteering with JA was so rewarding to help students expand their knowledge base.  They were active and genuinely engaged in the various subjects we presented.  As a first time volunteer, this experience has definitely motivated me to continue being a JA Volunteer. – David McDowell
It was such a privilege to volunteer, interact and educate the youth here in our home town through JA last year. Whether the impact was small or large, or even changed the path of just one student, I know that it was an amazing opportunity for growth and understanding not only for the students, but for myself as well. – Callie Frey
It’s a great experience. Having never heard of “JA Biztown” before, I was amazed at how well put together it all was. From the physically built “mini-businesses” to the instructors who worked there, everything was top-notch. JPM Chase & Co.’s involvement in this is just one small example of how they give back to the community on a daily basis. – David Eckert
Priceless satisfaction comes from giving one’s time for the benefit of others and that feeling is multiplied when children are the beneficiary. Leading student engagement was immensely rewarding and the structured JA program made it easy to participate without prior experience. – Corey Deye
Partnering with Junior Achievement was incredibly rewarding.  Our team loved giving back to the community in a meaningful way to inspire young minds with potential career paths.  We got to underscore our real life experiences in the work force to help guide middle school aged kids in underserved communities.  I wish a business professional had visited me when I was that age to tell me the “real deal.” – Michelle Arencivia
Volunteering with JA was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed teaching and setting an example to our future leaders. I would love to volunteer for JA every year. – Candice Griffin
I would describe my experience with JA volunteering in one word – rewarding. It’s an amazing opportunity to give back and help the community, particularly underserved communities.  – Brian Stapleton
Seeing the interest on the kids’ faces and how engaged they all were, it makes you realize how this program fills a need across the partnering schools and how rewarding it is to be a small piece of the larger puzzle. – Adam Myhal
From JPMorgan Chase's perspective, what does JA mean to central Ohio's students?
For students, JA offers a break in their everyday routine and an opportunity to think creatively. My first JA volunteer experience was spending the day with a class of fourth graders to teach them about financial responsibility. I was a bit nervous because I wasn’t sure how receptive the class would be to the material on the subject. From the moment we entered the classroom, the students were excited to see that today would be different from their regular classroom experience and were ready to participate in every activity. We tried to incorporate ways for them to get up and move around the classroom as well as work in small groups together to encourage their engagement. It was a truly great experience to see the kids working together to plan a budget or learn about different career paths, and having fun while doing so.
JA also inspires students to think about their future schooling, careers, and even life goals. We played a game similar to “The Game of Life” with the students, which sparked conversations about college and trade school, career trajectory, family life, and more. Many of the students’ plans kept changing over the course of the day as we talked about every opportunity available to them and how it relates back to what they are currently learning in school. A fellow JPMC employee and JA volunteer’s daughters were excited to announce they would like to be “a veterinarian” and “a teacher, maybe I’ll teach about Junior Achievement” after their day with JA. While these plans may continue to change, I think having these conversations at a young age helps motivate the students in their schoolwork and inspires them to achieve great things. JA means a bright and successful future for students and JPMC is proud to be a part of it through this partnership.

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