About JA

Junior Achievement programs help to prepare young people for the real world by showing them how to generate wealth and effectively manage it, how to create jobs which make their communities more robust, and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace. Students put these lessons into action, and help strengthen their communities.

JA in Maine has taught nearly 11,000 students throughout our state this year.   In partnership with local businesses and educators JA brings the real world to students, opening their minds to their potential and preparing them for the world of work.

Junior Achievement of Maine’s office is located at  82 Elm Street in Portland, Maine.  From this hub, opportunities are created for thousands of Maine kids in classrooms throughout the state of Maine, to participate in the Junior Achievement Experience.

JA in-school economic education programs help Maine kids develop the skills, attitudes and behaviors of success.  JA brings volunteers from the community face to face with students for the simplest of human interaction – sharing.  Serving as role models and links to the community, classroom volunteers make economic concepts relevant, raise aspirations, and challenge the students to excel.  JA programs have the potential to make a powerful difference in the lives of young people.  We know that.  We see it, and hear it through the eyes of our volunteers and their teacher partners, and experience its  ourselves when we, too, volunteer in the classroom.

And that is what energizes this office.  Truly, their success is our inspiration.

Our History

Junior Achievement was founded in 1919 by Theodore Vail president of American Telephone & Telegraph; Horace Moses, president of Strathmore Paper Co.; and Senator Murray Crane of Massachusetts. Its first program, JA Company Program, was offered to high school students on an after-school basis. In 1975, the organization entered the classroom with the introduction of Project Business for the middle grades. Over the last 30 years, JA has expanded its activities and broadened its scope to include in-school and afterschool students.