SBC Long Distance a Key Player in "Junior Achievement Day"

More than 3,000 elementary school students in Pleasanton will be learning lessons ranging from the purpose of a newspaper as a communication tool for people in a city, to how countries trade goods, through a collaboration of the Pleasanton business community and Junior Achievement of the Bay Area.

On May 31 and June 4 respectively, volunteers from SBC Long Distance and Kraft Foods and staff from Junior Achievement will spend the day at Phoebe Hearst and Alisal Elementary Schools to kick-off "Junior Achievement Day."

The objective of "Junior Achievement Day" is to provide students with role models who can teach students about the world of work and bridge the gap between school and career. Classroom volunteers are trained by Junior Achievement and loaned to the schools for the day to teach real-life business lessons.

"With today's unpredictable economy, the way to prepare students for future career success goes beyond focusing all our energy on standardized tests," says Shawn O'Hara, president of Junior Achievement of the Bay Area. "Our data shows that young people are unsure about their job prospects and at the same time dreaming of becoming millionaires. Clearly there is a disconnect.

"Having business professionals from SBC Long Distance in the classroom goes a long way to expand students' views of career options. It helps them make wise choices about their futures and understand what it takes to succeed in life."

Despite the fast pace of the business world, more than 25,000 business volunteers have found the time to bring Junior Achievement programs to students in the Bay Area, helping to build a future work force.

"JA is a wonderful opportunity for the business community to interact with our educational community," says Sarah Hollister, a first grade teacher at Vintage Hills Elementary School. "JA provides a sense of direction for students. It is a hands-on program that makes students excited to learn about their community and to apply this knowledge to their everyday lives."

"Junior Achievement Day" is just one example of Junior Achievement's K-12 economic education programs that reach more than 100,000 students in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, and Solano counties.

Junior Achievement is still in need of volunteers for the JA Day Program at Phoebe Hearst Elementary School on May 31st.

Junior Achievement will also be holding a Bowl-a-thon on June 20 from 3:00-5:00 p.m. at Earl Anthony's Bowling Center in Dublin to raise money for Junior Achievement Programs. This is a great team-building event and a great way to help kids. If you would like to volunteer or participate in the Junior Achievement Bowl-a-thon, please call Toby Brink, director of Tri-Valley/Tri-City Operations, at (925) 743-8277.

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