Junior Achievement of West Kentucky provided students attending the HL Neblett Community Center this summer with hands-on experience in the business world through curriculum, in-person site visits, and simulations through its Biztown Adventures experience in collaboration with the Daviess County Public Library. and Truth Bank.
According to JA’s website, students participate in the Biztown Adventures online program through simulations where they assume the roles of general manager, financial manager, marketing manager, sales manager and consumer.
Additionally, they learn topics such as debit and credit cards, filling out a check register, business ethics, and business management to foster critical thinking skills and commitment to help students use what they have learned and apply it to the business world.
“This program focuses on different roles each week,” said Autumne Baker, vice president of regional operations for Junior Achievement. “Maybe none of these kids will aspire to be any of those things, but I think it’s great because it shows them that some of the activities that are part of the simulation are things that they will do in the world of work or even in school.”
Keith Cottoner, executive director of the HL Neblett Community Center, said the offer of this type of opportunity stemmed from a
“When I was living in Louisville, my oldest daughter went through Junior Achievement when I think she was in fifth grade,” he said. “…I thought this would be a great thing for our kids to do during the summer…outside the facility.”
The library’s public lounge hosted the student simulations to provide additional space and laptops for attendees.
“It aligns perfectly with our mission,” said Jarrod McCarty, community engagement manager at DCPL. “I think with all the organizations (involved), education is a big focus for all of us. … It’s necessary for the children in our community.
A speaker series element has been added to the program through Truist Bank for a more comprehensive experience of showing children around the bank’s main downtown branch and talking to those who work in the field.
“For Truist, giving back to our communities is very important to us,” said Angie Morrison, Market President of Truist Bank. “It is very important for us to work with children; they are our future…”
Morrison said learning these roles could also apply to children’s daily lives.
“…You can be the financial manager of your own household because you get income, you have bills to pay,” Morrison said. “We were able to show the different needs of the importance of a CFO role, whether in the business world or (one’s) own personal finance.”
Cottoner was happy the children got to have this experience and looks forward to having this opportunity in the future.
“I’m hoping to do that again next summer and just so it’s a recurring thing,” he said.