Last year’s HPM-sponsored Junior Achievement (JA) high school company team was named “Company of the year.” This year 17 students on the HPM-sponsored and advised team will try to repeat.
Under the guidance of local business professionals, East Hawaii high school students participate each fall in the JA of Hawaii Island’s Company Program. The program is the only of its kind in the state and provides the students the opportunity to create and run their own company over a period of 15 weeks.
The students learn and get hands-on experience:
- Developing a business plan
- Issuing stock to capitalize the company
- Selecting officers
- Conducting research and deciding on products to market
- Manufacturing their products
- Advertising and promoting their products
- Handling all of the finances including accounts payable & receivable, and financial statements
- Participating in community service projects
- Practicing “green”/sustainable business practices
In addition to HPM, this year’s teams are sponsored by Bank of Hawaii, Big Island Toyota, HFS Federal Credit Union, and HELCO.
The students’ largest sales opportunity is during the JA Trade Fair held at the Prince Kuhio Plaza in Hilo on the Friday and Saturday following Thanksgiving. Stop by to see their handmade products.
In January at the JA “Futures Unlimited Banquet,” companies and individuals will be awarded based on their performance and results. The Program also self-funds scholarships awarded annually to select participating seniors.
In addition to the Company Program, through hundreds of volunteers each year JA provides economic and business education to more than 3,000 East Hawaii students in grades kindergarten through high school. For more information about the JA of Hawaii Island’s programs visit www.hawaii-island.ja.org or www.facebook.com/ja.hawaii.