Junior Achievement of Southeastern Michigan (JA) – part of the world’s largest organization dedicated to educating students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs – recently received funding from Gold Star Law to support its Finance Park program, right here in Detroit!

Established in 2003, JA Finance Park is one of Junior Achievement’s most successful programs, and more than 1 million students across the United States have gone through the hands-on program since it first began. The month-long economics education program introduces personal financial planning and career exploration to middle and high school students, helping them build a foundation for making intelligent, lifelong, personal financial decisions.

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Gold Star Law’s financial support through the CBS EcoMedia EducationAd program will provide educational materials to support the Finance Park program and cover the operating costs of the JA Finance Park facility for two middle schools to participate. Funding will impact approximately 250 students from metro Detroit schools.

The program begins with in-school teacher taught curriculum providing students with financial education to ensure success during the JA Finance Park simulation. The curriculum covers debit versus credit, salaries and taxes, financial institutions, investing, budgeting, and a chance to explore different career opportunities and the education requirements for these careers.

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Following these lessons, students visit Quicken Loans JA Finance Park in Detroit. In this high-tech, hands-on environment, students become an adult for the day and immerse themselves in real-world simulations through which they are assigned a salary, interact with merchants, and can make payments via issued debit cards.

“Gold Star Law is thrilled to be supporting JA Finance Park,” says Maia Johnson, attorney at Gold Star Law. “Normally, we help people who are already active members of the workforce handle disputes with employers. It was refreshing to mentor students as they prepare themselves for future careers and financial responsibilities. This is a great program that gives students the opportunity for hands-on experience with the realities of economic independence, and we are happy to be a part of it.”

To celebrate the partnership, 8 Gold Star Law employees (including Johnson) mentored students at the Park today. Each employee guided approximately 10 students during their journeys throughout the day, helping them develop and stick to budgets based on their assigned fictional life situation.

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“JA Finance Park provides a foundation for financial education at an early age in a manner that is substantive and fun,” said Paul Polizzotto, president and founder, CBS EcoMedia. “Gold Star Law’s financial support through our EducationAd program is critical to help Junior Achievement create meaningful, real-world opportunities for learning that pave the way for student success as they progress through school and on to college and career.”