Junior Achievement's mission is to inspire and
prepare young people to succeed in a global economy.
About Junior Achievement
We are the nation's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their futures, and make smart academic and economic choices. Junior Achievement's programs—in the core content areas of work readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy—ignite the spark in young people to experience and realize the opportunities and realities of work and life in the 21st century.
A Brief History
Junior Achievement was founded in 1919 by Theodore Vail, president of American Telephone & Telegraph; Horace Moses, president of Strathmore Paper Co.; and Senator Murray Crane of Massachusetts. Its first program, JA Company Program®, was offered to high school students on an after-school basis. In 1975, the organization entered the classroom with the introduction of Project Business for the middle grades. Over the last 39 years, Junior Achievement has expanded its activities and broadened its scope to include in-school and after-school students.
Junior Achievement programming came to Rhode Island in 1921 and has been a vital resource to Rhode Island youth and the business and education communities ever since. With the assistance of twenty-two local business leaders, the state organization formally incorporated into Junior Achievement of Rhode Island, Inc. in 1949 in order to maintain a permanent, long-term presence in the state. Since then, Junior Achievement of Rhode Island's purpose has been to educate and inspire young people to value free enterprise and understand business and economics to improve the quality of their lives.
In our 96 years in Rhode Island, we have reached more than 400,000 K-12 students. During the 2015-2016 year, JA programs reached nearly 7,000 students, of which 72% were in Rhode Island's urban and urban-ring school districts.
Junior Achievement's classroom volunteers come from all walks of life, including: business people, college students, parents and retirees. These dedicated individuals are the backbone of our organization.
Junior Achievement is one of a few nonprofits to use independent, third-party evaluators to gauge the impact of its programs. Since 1993, independent evaluators have conducted studies on Junior Achievement's effectiveness. Findings prove that Junior Achievement has a positive impact in a number of critical areas. We invite you to read the Programs Evaluation Results.
Junior Achievement is the recognized leader in "empowering young people to own their economic success®" through volunteer-led, experiential learning. We are dedicated to providing a positive, enriching learning experience free of bias. Junior Achievement welcomes K-12 students, volunteers and potential staff regardless of race, religion, age, gender, national origin, disability, sexual orientation or any other legally protected characteristic.