Employers agree that the nation's college graduates are not prepared with the 21st century skills to succeed in the workplace. There are more than 90,000 young people out of school and out of work - disconnected - in the metro Washington area. 50% of high school dropouts say that they left school because they didn't think they were learning things that mattered to their future. Put simply, we're not empowering our kids to be more successful than the generations who came before them.

At Junior Achievement®, we believe that education from kindergarten to twelfth grade should be built on a bridge of engagement between classroom and community. Together with our educational partners, we can make learning relevant to every student's future by infusing authenticity, business connectivity, and real role models into the everyday learning experience.

With education, corporate, and volunteer partners like you, we can inspire a generation of kids to be financially capable, tenacious, and equipped with the tools to manage risk effectively, solve problems creatively, and welcome success in a complex economy. By giving kids a hands-on look at what's possible, we can inspire them to work hard, dream big, and change our world. Our programs empower kids to transform "I can't" into "I can" and their dreams into plans.

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Our core values

  • Belief in the boundless potential of young people
  • Commitment to the principles of market-based economics and entrepreneurship
  • Passion for what we do and honesty, integrity, and excellence in how we do it
  • Respect for the talents, creativity, perspectives, and backgrounds of all individuals
  • Belief in the power of partnership and collaboration
  • Conviction in the educational and motivational impact of relevant, hands-on learning

who we are

Click to view the areas of the region that we serve.

Junior Achievement® is the world’s largest organization dedicated to educating students in grades K-12 about financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship, reaching more than 8 million students in 100 countries worldwide.

In the most powerful city in the world, Junior Achievement of Greater Washington has been transforming lives for a half century through its innovative, hands-on financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship K-12 programs. Its best-in-business Board of Directors represents a “who’s who” of Washington business, and its proven-record of success in delivery of programs and corporate partnerships shows that there is no organization better-equipped to lead a major movement of youth preparedness in our nation’s capital. JA®’s unique program approach brings volunteer role models from our region’s leading companies and the community to deliver these standards-based programs, providing students with a perspective that reaches far beyond the classroom. Since its founding in 1965, Junior Achievement of Greater Washington has inspired almost 800,000 of Greater Washington young people to envision their future and understand that anything is possible.

What We've Achieved

  • Partnership with Fairfax County Public Schools on the construction of JA Finance Park® where approximately 14,000 FCPS students become JA Finance Park® graduates each year
  • Partnership with Prince George's County Public Schools on the construction of a second financial literacy center, JA Finance Park® in Landover, MD, where about 9,000 PGCPS students become JA Finance Park® graduates each year
  • Partnership with Montgomery County Public Schools on the construction of a third financial literacy center, JA Finance Park® in Montgomery County, scheduled to open in 2018 on the fourth floor of the new Thomas Edison High School of Technology building.
  • A visionary strategic plan to lead the organization for the next 5-7 years, bringing the JA Finance Park® experience to more students in the region, and broadening and deepening JA®'s impact on our region's high school students to ensure a generation of young people who are financially capable and work-ready.
  • Best-in-business Board of Directors who represent a "who's who" of Washington's leading companies and organizations
  • Almost 800,000 students impacted by JA® programs in Greater Washington since the founding of Junior Achievement of Greater Washington in 1965
  • Founding partner of the Washington Business Hall of Fame, with the Greater Washington Board of Trade and Washingtonian, that has honored more than 100 of Washington's leading visionaries since its founding in 1988, including Steve Case, Katherine Graham, David Rubenstein, Ted Leonsis, and J. Willard Marriott, Jr.