www.mybaycity.com June 8, 2010
Rotary Article 4969

Junior Achievement Has Waiting List of Schools Wanting Program for Students

June 8, 2010
By: Dave Rogers

The secret to Junior Achievement is "hands on" education, says Mark Pankner with the benefit of 28 years experience as a JA executive.

Mr. Pankner, introduced by Brenda Rowley, was the speaker at last Tuesday's meeting of the Rotary Club of Bay City.

The graduate of Ferris State University and former automotive executive, told Rotarians how he had increased student participation in JA from 2,100 a year to 11,245 a year in 13 counties of northeast Michigan since 1994.

Previously, he was the JA executive in Lansing for 12 years during which enrollment in the program went from 865 to 4,600.

Why the popularity of JA's program? "It's hands-on learning and involves volunteers helping students relate theories to the real world," said Mr. Pankner.

"After 28 years with JA, now is the most challenging time of my career," he said. "We have a waiting list of schools and programs that will help volunteers learn while teaching."

Junior Achievement is the world's largest and fastest growing non-profit economic education organization. "Our programs are taught by classroom volunteers from the business community across America and in over 103 countries worldwide," said Mr. Pankner.

Junior Achievement of Northeast Michigan serves the counties of Alcona, Alpena, Arenac, Bay, Huron, Iosco, Montmorency, Ogemaw, Oscoda, Presque Isle, Saginaw, Sanilac and Tuscola. Last year 11,245 students, participated in one of Junior Achievement's economic programs in an elementary, middle or high school. The goal for 2009-2010 is to reach 13,000 students. Last year over 500 consultants (volunteers) visited 520 classrooms a minimum of 3,250 times.

The area JA office is in Saginaw with a phone number 792-9050.

The northeast Michigan organization's latest expansion is into Oscoda County, in the Mio and Oscoda areas. Latest teaching techniques help students understand the world financial crisis, stock market fluctuations and the skyrocketing federal budget.

It's financial literacy, entrepreneurship and work skills all rolled into one program, with volunteers serving as role models and teaching problem solving, communication and critical thinking, he said.

Some programs are very basic, such as one that engages second graders in determining "needs" and "wants." For example, Mr. Pankner explained, a beach ball and a puppy dog are "wants" while a house is a "need." For one little girl, the house was particularly desirable. "She said the house was more -- explaining that the family was living in their car but 'daddy's going to get a job and we'll get a house.'"

Those are the poignant stories that are encountered all too often in JA work and volunteerism, finding out "the trials and tribulations teachers face," Mr. Pankner said.


In other club activities, Jonathon Teich was inducted as the latest, and youngest, Paul Harris Fellow, joining his father Rev. Andreas and his mother in the fellowship.

Kathy Czerwinski also announced that the club has won the RI 2009-2010 Presidential Citation from RI President John Kenney.

The International Night committee will meet at 11 a.m. June 22.

Incoming President Eric Jylha is seeking volunteer public relations and programming committee members and youth exchange hosts for next year.

Leo Najar invites all members, family, friends, kids and pets to join the Rotary Chorus for the July Fourth Fireworks. We will again sing on stage to accompany the Bijou Orchestra and the fireworks on Saturday July 3rd. There will be a couple of rehearsals, but the music is very familiar and easy. After rehearsal on Saturday everyone will go the Chadwick's house for a picnic than back to the Riverfront where you'll enjoy the BEST SEAT in the house for.

Remember that the Rotary Golf Outing is scheduled for June 28. Bob Chadwick noted that more golfing teams are needed for the event at the Bay City Country Club. Even if you don't play you can buy a chance for great prizes in the Helicopter Golf Ball Drop. Thanks to sponsors Covenant, Bay Regional, Wildfire Credit Union and Bay Special Care Hospital. Full information is available on the club web site at www.rotarybaycity.org

The satellite INTERNET system that the club helped sponsor in Guatemala has been installed. Everyone in that community is excited and thankful. A picture of the rig was passed around.
Make-up On-Line at www.RotaryEclubOne.org


The next new member orientation will be held May 26.

2010 Golf Scramble Monday, June 28 at the Bay City Country Club. Save the date.
Learn more at RotaryBayCity.org.

Upcoming Programs

(See the official schedule at RotaryBayCity.org )
June 15: Angie Price of Weinlander-Fitzhugh CPA's will speak on how social networking sites can be used for social engineering. Learn how to protect your company from the potential threat of Facebook.

June 22: Tall Ship Celebration 2010 update

June 29: CPS-3 Study a grassroots effort where local communities from across the country can support cancer research not just through fundraising efforts like Relay For Life, but also by participating actively in this historic research study.

July 6: Passing the Gavel. The new Rotary year begins as Eric Jyhla takes office as 2010-2011 President.

Visit RotaryBayCity.org

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