TurningPoint proud sponsors of the 2015 Junior Achievement Company of the Year22

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA, June 26, 2015 – On Wednesday, June 24, in Washington, D.C., Junior Achievement USA® (JA) named the teen entrepreneurs who created the student-run start-up CCA Today from Junior Achievement of San Diego County as winners of the 2015 JA Company of the Year, powered by The Hartford. The team was selected from among 15 competing student companies representing JA operations across the country at JA’s National Student Leadership Summit (NSLS).

CCA Today Team- Madison Moreno, PR, Rachel Gorgas, CEO, Kinni Fux, PR, Hannah Bush, CMO and Lorenzo Patino, CFO

CCA Today Team- Madison Moreno, PR, Rachel Gorgas, CEO, Kinni Fux, PR, Hannah Bush, CMO and Lorenzo Patino, CFO

In addition to winning the “JA Company of the Year” title, the San Diego teens representing the student company in Washington, D.C. were awarded a JA Company of the Year Scholarship from The Hartford. The scholarships were awarded to five students on each of the top three finishing teams. Each member of the CCA team will receive a $4,000 scholarship. CCA Today also took home the “Social Media Award” for creating a solution to address a local, national or global social concern.

The San Diego students represent Canyon Crest Academy High in Carmel Valley and created a school app to inform students of activities and events on school campus. CCA Today’s product, which is compatible with all smart phones, serves as a recreational, campus-wide application designed to enlighten students with information about events, schedules, news, and more. The teen company hopes the new technology will encourage students to feel a part of their school and improve their experience at CCA.

“I am so proud of the team from Canyon Crest Academy. They put their hearts and souls into this project and the end result was so impressive. I feel so honored to be involved as a sponsor and mentor for this incredible group and I commend them on their perseverance and determination to learn from the experience, focusing on the process and realities of building and managing a business, regardless of how much money they actually made. To think they are no older than 18, already developing an app that can fundamentally change the way students, faculty and parents communicate on and off campus. I can’t wait to see what these teens do over the next four years,” said Ken Schmitt, President/Founder, TurningPoint Executive Search, JA San Diego Board Member and JA Company Program Mentor for CCA Today.


The annual JA Company of the Year Competition is a contest of business skills, ingenuity and innovation that focuses on the accomplishments of U.S. JA Company Program*. Nearly 13,000 U.S. students, ages 15-19, created 700 start-up companies during the 2014-2015 school year. JA Company Program gives teens the skills to start and run their own businesses under the mentorship of a local business volunteer.

Last summer, with support from The Hartford, Junior Achievement released a reimagined JA Company Program which incorporates a blended learning approach into the students’ entrepreneurial experience. The new JA Company Program now includes 13 modular experiences as part of a blended-learning approach that offers groups of students the opportunity to apply key concepts involved in launching a business while learning the basics of entrepreneurship, financial literacy and business success.

“I have watched these students throughout the year as they started and grew their business. They truly demonstrate how fostering entrepreneurship can help spur economic growth through innovation and job creation,” said Tanya Johnson, Senior Education Manager at Junior Achievement of San Diego County.
The student companies competing at the NSLS were assessed on their financial performance, individual team members’ personal and professional development, a self-produced commercial, a live presentation to a panel of business leaders, and on their performance at an Entrepreneurship Expo on Capitol Hill attended by Members of Congress.

“These students are the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovators who will be vital for our country’s long-term competitiveness. They are proof that San Diego’s innovation economy yields positive benefits at every level, and they deserve congratulations for their hard work and dedication to developing this platform,” said U.S. Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52).
The JA Company Program, a hallmark of JA dating back to 1919, lets students start and manage their own business. By organizing and operating an actual business enterprise, students not only experience how business functions, but also learn financial responsibly, work-readiness skills and entrepreneurship.

About Junior Achievement of San Diego County
Junior Achievement of San Diego County works locally to impact 54,000 students in K-12 classrooms in the 2014-2015 school year. Junior Achievement’s volunteer-based programs teach kids how to get a job, start a business, and how to manage money. For more information, please visit www.jasandiego.org.

About Junior Achievement USA® (JA)
Junior Achievement is the world’s largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA programs are delivered by corporate and community volunteers, and provide relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship. Today, JA reaches 4.5 million students per year in 115 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.7 million students served by operations in 120 other countries worldwide. Junior Achievement USA is a member of JA Worldwide. Visit www.ja.org for more information.

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