Junior Achievement of Arizona Receives $2M Grant

The Arizona Department of Education has granted $2 million to Junior Achievement of Arizona through the ESSER III Setaside funds — now called the AZ ARP School & Community Grant — to expand JA Inspire. The additional funds will be used to hire five to seven staff members and reach 175,000 Arizona middle and high school students over the next 2½ years.

“JA Inspire is our premier career exploration program that engages primarily low-income middle and high school students both in the classroom and in a virtual career fair setting,” said Katherine Cecala, president of Junior Achievement of Arizona. “It fosters collaboration across K-12, post-secondary educational paths, and high-demand industries in our workforce. Business, parents, volunteers, teachers and governmental partners all work together to deliver career exploration and career-readiness programming.”

The program helps students understand the skills, knowledge, behaviors and attitudes they need to build to become successful in the workforce and have a financially secure future. JA Inspire gives students the career and financial literacy knowledge to pursue high-wage, high-quality jobs for a prosperous life and, over time, be a resource for them to find jobs, apprenticeships and internships.

“We know that having a good job and being financially stable fall under the economic stability domain of the social determinants of health,” Cecala said.


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