New JA Company Program Incorporates Latest Thinking on How to Launch Startup

Today, Junior Achievement USA, with the support of The Hartford, is announcing the launch of the new JA Company Program®. The updated program, which introduces teens to the excitement of conceptualizing, launching, and running their own business in a startup environment, is the latest version of the original student company program that goes back to Junior Achievement’s beginnings in 1919.

“Up until the mid-1970s, the student-run company model was the only program offered by Junior Achievement,” said Jack E. Kosakowski, President and CEO of Junior Achievement USA. “However, with the support of The Hartford, the new JA Company Program incorporates all of the latest thinking in terms of launching a successful startup, including the use of technology and contemporary business practices.”

“We are thrilled to be long-standing supporters of Junior Achievement and their innovative JA Company Program,” said The Hartford’s head of community relations AnnMarie LaBreck. “We believe empowering the next generation with the right business skills is vital to cultivating a community where everyone can be successful. This partnership is one way we aim to accomplish that.”

JA Company Program empowers high school students to fill a need or solve a problem in their community and teaches them practical skills required to conceptualize, capitalize, and manage their own business venture. Throughout the process of building their own company, students collaborate, make crucial business decisions, communicate with multiple stakeholders, and develop entrepreneurial knowledge and skills. Community volunteers and mentors provide real-world guidance and experience to the student-led startup. The program is available for both in-school and afterschool settings and may be completed during one semester or throughout an entire school year.

The program comes in both a teacher-led and volunteer-led models and uses blended learning technology. These models allow the JA Company Program to be delivered in various learning environments that are being used this school year in response to social distancing guidelines.

For more information about Junior Achievement and programs like the JA Company Program, visit