Local Schools and Businesses Partner with JA of New Jersey to Inspire Students to Explore Career Options
February 7, 2023, Edison, New Jersey – With the return of in-person learning, JA Inspire has a two-part culminating experience this year. After successfully running the JA Inspire Virtual Career Fair over the past two years, Junior Achievement of New Jersey (JANJ) will relaunch JA Inspire Career Fair in-person this spring. The simulated version of JA Inspire, known as JA Inspire Virtual, launched in December 2022 on the online platform, vFairs, while the in-person JA Inspire Career Fair will take place on March 7th at Middlesex College, and on a soon to be announced date at Atlantic Cape Community College.
JA Inspire is a one-of-a-kind career exploration event for middle school students that brings together the business community and New Jersey schools to help introduce young people to their future worlds of work. This year, the program will have two separate experiences: JA Inspire Virtual and the JA Inspire Career Fair, an in-person event, with schools having the option to participate in one or both events. Whether in-person or virtual, JA Inspire gives NJ’s future workforce the opportunity to learn about the careers in a variety of industries and sectors.
James Horne Jr., President & CEO of JANJ states, "We are excited to have JA Inspire back in-person. Last year we were able to reach 8,544 students virtually, and I know our numbers will increase significantly with two upcoming in-person events, in addition to the virtual component running on-demand until June 2023. Since it is virtual, even more students and businesses will be able to participate." Over 13,000 students are expected to participate in JA Inspire this year. Junior Achievement’s staff has worked closely with school districts in all counties to provide access to students across the state.
The virtual platform resembles a convention center when students enter the simulation. Local businesses will be able to provide students with information regarding their business and industry, all while being in the comfort of their own home or workplace.
While JA Inspire Virtual will introduce students to many careers, the JA Inspire Career Fair will bring those careers to life and connect industry leaders with students. Making these connections are crucial in relation to employment, and this type of event enables students to communicate directly with industry professionals. Many local businesses from across the area will be ready to show students what a day in the life of someone with their job looks like, how to get that job, and what they’ll need to do for the duration of their school career to prepare and be successful in that job.
Thanks to the sponsorship support so far this year, thousands of New Jersey students will be able to discover different types of career pathways, and the motivation to explore diverse professions, at no cost to them. With a wide range of careers to uncover, from technology to marketing, finance, engineering, trades, public service, entrepreneurship, legal, AI, cybersecurity, and more, the JA Inspire series will offer participating companies a chance to focus their engagement on what they want young people to know about their world of work, including careers, internships, and company culture.
This year’s sponsors include Presenting Sponsors: ADP, Amazon, Merck, and Sanofi; Platinum Sponsors: Church & Dwight, Kearny Bank, NJM, and Quest Diagnostics; Gold Sponsors: Deloitte, Jersey Central Power & Light, New Jersey Resources, Novartis, and Williams; Silver Sponsors: AIG, Atlantic City Electric, Bristol Myers Squibb, Crowe, CSAA Insurance Group, ETS, HSBC, Johnson & Johnson, L’Oréal, Munich Re, NRG, SJI, Solar Landscape, StateFarm, and US Silica. Various sponsorship opportunities for participating businesses help to ensure the sustainable and effective delivery of JA programs as a solution in communities throughout the state. To get involved, please contact Kathy Mikula at Kathleen.Mikula@ja.org.
Both JA Inspire and JA Inspire Virtual Career Fair are available at no cost to students. Students may participate through their school, and pre-registration is required to access the virtual platform. To learn more about JA Inspire Virtual and upcoming JA Inspire Career Fairs, click here.
About JA of New Jersey (JANJ):
JA of New Jersey (JANJ) is an award-winning, free educational resource JA operation dedicated to providing New Jersey’s youth with relevant experiential education in financial literacy, career readiness, entrepreneurship, and life skills. We imagine a world in which young people have the skillset and mindset to build thriving communities. With its headquarters and Capstone programs located in the JA Education Center, in Raritan Center, Edison, NJ, JANJ is committed to giving all young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success and plan for their futures. JANJ’s learning experiences are held at the JA Education Center, in schools, on college/university campuses, in corporate facilities, and online through digital learning experiences. For more information, visit janj.org and follow JANJ on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.