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About JA


At Junior Achievement we believe in "possible." Each day, we work to help young people discover what’s possible in their lives. We do this by helping them connect what they learn in school with life outside the classroom. We let them know it’s possible to invest in their future, to gain a better understanding of how the world works, and to pursue their dreams. We show them that it’s possible for tomorrow to be a better day.


Our Values


In the boundless potential of young people.

Seek Out

Diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and talents in our staff and volunteers, and boards to reflect the geographies and communities we serve.


The power of partnerships and collaboration.


Our work with passion, honesty, integrity, and excellence.


Principled market-based economics and entrepreneurship that build a more sustainable world.


For relevant hands-on learning.

Empowering the Next Generation

Junior Achievement’s proven lessons in financial literacy, work and career readiness, and entrepreneurship are shown to positively impact the lives of young people. These lessons align with national and state educational standards and are delivered to millions of students across the country with the help of our education partners and volunteers from the local community.

Research shows that JA Alumni are more likely to have a college degree, feel confident managing money, have career success, and have started a business as an adult.

Learn more about 2021-2022 Alumni Survey Report

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Junior Achievement Facts

What is Junior Achievement?

Junior Achievement has over 100 local offices across the nation, and together 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. JA'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.


Junior Achievement's purpose is to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy.


Lori Jacob is the President and CEO of JA of Greater St. Louis.

Shawn Schukar, President and CEO, Ameren Transmission Company Services is the Board Chair.

JA of Greater St. Louis has over 60 board members who hold positions in important business sectors throughout the St. Louis region.

Proven Success

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.

Program Reach

Locally, Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis will reach more than 160,000 students this year in 6,300+ classrooms and after-school locations. JA programs are taught by volunteers in inner cities, suburbs, and rural areas. Volunteers come from all walks of life, including: business people, college students, parents, and retirees. Dedicated individuals are the backbone of our organization.

JA of Greater St. Louis Awards

Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis maintains the highest standards. We are honored to be recognized by our peers and the community.

- Junior Achievement USA Star Award 1998-2022
- Junior Achievement USA Peak Performance Team Award 2013-2014
- Excellence in Community Development 2014 - Progress 64 West
- Metlife Foundation Entrepreneurial Award: JA Finance Park Online and JA Accounting: INROADS to a Certified Professional Achieve

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 of Greater St. Louis was founded in 1943 and has served the needs of hundreds of thousands of students..

Organizational Overview

Junior Achievement USA is headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and provides strategic direction, leadership, and support to over 100 JA Areas across the nation. Local volunteer boards of directors comprised of business, education, and civic leaders set the policy and direction for each local office.

JA of Greater St. Louis is the local office servicing portions of Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana. Our professional staff works with schools, companies, and volunteers to provide quality programs to students throughout our region.

Local Impact on Education

Related to educational attainment, 97 percent of JA STL Alumni graduated high school or have a GED. This is 5 points higher than the STL Metro population and 9 points higher than the national population average.

When it comes to higher education, JA STL Alumni are nearly 113 percent more likely to have a four-year degree than the national population and 94 percent more likely compared to the STL Metro population.

At the same time, JA STL Alumni are 158 percent more likely to have an advanced degree compared to the national population and 121 percent more likely compared to the STL Metro population.

Source: 2019 Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis impact study of alumni in the St. Louis Metro area. Complete 2019 JASTL Alumni Impact Study

Local Impact on Careers

On the career front, 41 percent of JA STL Alumni credit JA with influencing their career choice, while approximately 1 in 3 say they work in the same career field as the JA volunteer who taught them as a student.

Additionally, 97 percent of JA STL Alumni report that they are satisfied with their careers, compared to 51.1 percent of the general public, according to the Conference Board.

Source: 2019 Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis impact study of alumni in the St. Louis Metro area. Complete 2019 JASTL Alumni Impact Study

Local Impact on Social Mobility

Respondents who grew up in low income households show a relatively much higher income level increase (170%) than respondents who grew up in mid and upper income households (4.5%) when compared to the respective STL Metro median

Source: 2019 Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis impact study of alumni in the St. Louis Metro area. Complete 2019 JASTL Alumni Impact Study

Local Impact on Income

The median household income for STL Metro Area is $61,571. In comparison, the median household income for JA STL Alumni is $75,000. This means JA STL Alumni make nearly 22 percent more than the STL Metro population.

Source: 2019 Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis impact study of alumni in the St. Louis Metro area. Complete 2019 JASTL Alumni Impact Study

Local Impact on Entrepreneurship

When it comes to business ownership, 84 percent of JA STL Alumni say that the greatest impact Junior Achievement had on their lives was helping them understand how business works.

Source: 2019 Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis impact study of alumni in the St. Louis Metro area. Click for JA of Greater St. Louis Alumni Survey Page

Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis Team


Our staff is committed to making your experience working with us absolutely the best!

JA Staff


Meet the passionate and committed team that is working hard to empower our youth.

JA Leadership


Our Board Members includes the finest business and individual leaders in our community.

JA Board

More about Junior Achievement

Financial and Annual Reports

We've consistently received high grades for accountability and transparency.

JA Financials


Join us on our mission to empower youth and create robust communities.

JA Careers

Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

We at Junior Achievement are dedicated to providing a positive, enriching learning experience free of bias that promotes greater economic opportunity and equity. Junior Achievement welcomes K-12 students, volunteers, educators, staff, and other partners and stakeholders, regardless of race, religion, age, gender, national origin, disability, sexual orientation or any other legally protected characteristic.

Select a button below to see how you or your organization can get involved with Junior Achievement of Greater St. Louis, Inc..

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