Junior Achievement Biz Town

After a two day drive from Atlanta, we arrived early last week to our former home town of York, PA for a visit with our daughter, various friends, and various doctors.  We stay just a few miles from Jessica at a small park that is nicely located, has full utilities, but not much else.  We plan to stay until the end of May when we head west for an extended trip around the country.

Soon after our arrival we spent a day volunteering with a Junior Achievement activity.  Junior Achievement is a national non-profit organization that provides programs that help prepare young people for the real world by showing them how to generate wealth and effectively manage it, how to create jobs which make their communities more robust, and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace.  The local York, PA center has a program called Biz Town, a realistic town with 13 “businesses” that are run by students during a five hour simulation.  Our daughter, Jessica, teaches sixth grade and asked us to help with the program when they were short on chaperons.  After a training session the previous evening, we spent a day supervising the activities in “City Hall”.

The “Mayor” giving his welcome speech

Each business has a variety of management positions that are assigned to students before they arrive.  There is a meeting in the town square to begin the day where each CEO makes a welcome speech.  Then, the work sessions begin.  Each business has to get a start up loan from the bank, set up a payroll and print/distribute checks to employees, pay taxes (by check) and collect fees or make sales.  The Lab Works below make a product (some sort of slime in a plastic bag) that the other students can purchase with their pay by writing a check, using a debit card, or using cash.

Radio Station and Lab Works retail business

Across the “park” to the Wellness Center and Distribution and Delivery

Distribution and Delivery run the mail service.  All bill payments are put in the box outside that area and are then delivered to the appropriate business.

A volunteer and teacher keeping a sharp eye on things

The construction company hard at work

The construction company assembled an Adirondack chair that is given to the school.

A bank not run by MorganStanley – all money is secure

Two of the volunteers

We had a great time with this activity.  The students were well-behaved and very focused on their assignments.  But this little taste of the education world made us appreciate the retirement world.  It’s difficult to believe that we did this type of thing every day for so many years!  And they begin so early in the morning leaving no time to read the paper, watch the Today Show, and go to Starbucks!  Wow ! ! !

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3 Responses to Junior Achievement Biz Town

  1. pmbweaver says:

    WOW…tell Jessica CONGRATULATIONS. That is a wonderful town. Is this just her class? How did they get all those building fronts? That is amazing. What a great day those kids must have had and what they must have learned. I hope you two learned something also…HAHA!

    Our girls participated in it for two years. Paul taught a class called OWA…Occupational Work Adjustment…in the high school. Every year his kids had a very important part in helping the kids get organized.

    Oh…so sorry you didn’t get your Starbucks that morning. I bet you both were bears to work with…lol! You both look marvelous!

    Hope you are enjoying your visit with Jessica and then your mom. Be safe.

  2. Tom Stack says:

    Looks like fun! how is everything going?

  3. Tim Kemp says:

    Hey Mr. Wright!!

    You have been a big topic of discussion in Mrs. Dominick’s class lately. Everyone has gotten word that you are close by and all the, “i miss him” stories have been coming out. You are certainly missed by all here at SHS. Im glad to hear you are enjoying your travels. Still carrying that pocket “rule book” I hope. I always have one with me it’s just inside my phone “never know when you’ll need it” (quotes from the wisest man I ever met). Anyhow just dropped by to say hello. Have a good trip around the country and stay safe!

    P.S. you should come back to the area for the graduation of the class of 2013!

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