June 11, 2019Print | PDF
As part of its ongoing commitment to supporting community businesses and cultivating future entrepreneurs, the Lazaridis School was proud to once again be the 2018-19 Waterloo location sponsor of Junior Achievement Waterloo Region (JA) Company Program.
JA’s company program is a free after-school program for high school students that enables them to gain “real-world” business experience by developing real products, selling to real customers and using real money.
“It’s great to see these amazing kids who are learning what interests them and what they want to do with their lives.”
Every Monday for 20 weeks, several dozen high school students were given access to the boardrooms, classrooms and workshop spaces of Lazaridis Hall, the state-of-the-art home of the business and economics programs at Wilfrid Laurier University. Inside, students learned how to build products and design marketing plans while also expanding their capacity for teamwork and collaboration.
“I’ve made a lot of friends through this program,” says 16-year-old Josh Bechtel. “This is the first year our company has made a profit so I’m learning more than ever about how to handle that side of a business.”
Josh’s company, LitLips is focused on making and selling beeswax lip chap while giving him and his team the chance to discover what they love to do.
“I’ve always been told that I was good at talking so I tried my hand at sales this year. I’ve learned that I’m really good at it and know that it’s what I want to do after high school.”
“It’s great to see these amazing kids who are learning what interests them and what they want to do with their lives,” says David Hussey, from Nicoya Life who volunteers with JA as a mentor.
“I enjoy watching the students grow their skills year after year,” says Hussey. “They start in grade nine with so much undirected enthusiasm and by grade 12 they are able to run (hopefully) successful companies.”
One such student is Mariya Peskova, a grade 12 student who is wrapping up her time with JA. “This year, I really like my company (denim scrunchies) because I was able to build on past experiences to know how best to avoid mistakes,” says Mariya, who in grade nine was too shy to talk to people and make connections and is about to begin a degree in chemistry at the University of Waterloo.
“Being able to support the junior achievement program completely aligns with our broader mission of helping students adapt to real-world challenges by providing them with a solid foundation from which to grow,” says Lazaridis School Corporate Engagement Officer, Graham McCormick.
The Lazaridis School is a proud sponsor of Junior Achievement Waterloo Region. For more information about this program, visit jawr.ca.
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