TransCanada’s commitment to Junior Achievement of Southern Alberta’s Economics for Success program pays dividends for junior high school students.
Do you remember how old you were when you got your first job? Your first car? Your first credit card? Did you receive any kind of financial literacy training before taking these big life-changing steps? Like most young adults, I was financially illiterate.
Junior Achievement of Southern Alberta (JASA) is looking to change that. For more than 50 years, the nonprofit organization has been providing programs to students in Grades 4 to 12 to help them develop a practical understanding of business and finance and cultivate an entrepreneurial attitude.
On April 22, TransCanada sent 46 volunteers to Mount Royal University (MRU) to mentor 400 junior high students from the Calgary Catholic School District and Rundle College Society. Our volunteers spent the day on campus facilitating JASA’s Economics for Success (EFS) program.
The day-long program featured numerous activities — including Guess the Price, Moving Day, Paper or Plastic? — that helped students understand the financial demands of living on their own, and identified resources needed to support their career journey.
“TransCanada works with organizations that support education and foster leadership,” says Brandon Anderson, Senior Vice-President, Western Power & Gas Storage at TransCanada. “By helping students understand why it’s important to stay in school, until they have the knowledge and skills to enter the work force, JASA is doing just that,” concludes Brandon, who sits on JASA’s Board of Directors.
Participation in Junior Achievement programs produced more financially literate graduates who saved more, borrowed less and went bankrupt less often than the average Canadian, according to a comprehensive study completed by the Boston Consulting Group in 2010.
The study shows that Junior Achievement graduates were also three times less likely to spend more than they earned, 25 per cent less likely to be unemployed, 50 per cent more likely to open their own business and three times more likely to hold a middle to senior management job.
TransCanada has been participating in JASA’s EFS program for more than a decade. Since 1999, we have contributed in excess of $450,000 to the organization.
Junior Achievement of Southern Alberta is one of 17 charters operating under the umbrella of Junior Achievement of Canada. Junior Achievement of Canada is a member of Junior Achievement Worldwide, an international not-for-profit organization. For more information on JASA visit: southern-alberta.jacan.org.