Cherokee Nation Foundation increasing Junior Achievement’s impact in northeast Oklahoma

April 29, 2019

Partnership fosters work-readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills in students

TULSA, Okla. – Cherokee Nation Foundation and Junior Achievement of Oklahoma are partnering to bring work-readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills to students in northeast Oklahoma.

“Together, we are reaching more students than ever before,” said Janice Randall, executive director of Cherokee Nation Foundation. “JA provides fun and engaging programs for students at every age level, and we could not ask for a better partner to help us in our mission to provide educational opportunities to Cherokee students so that they can reach their full potential.”

CNF serves as an extension of JAOK and offers a variety of JA programs to schools within the Cherokee Nation. So far this year, CNF has facilitated programs to 42 schools, impacting more than 5,700 students.

Recently, the foundation hosted students from Tahlequah High School and Hilldale High School at JA Finance Park® presented by Bank of Oklahoma.

JA Finance Park is just one of many programs supported by CNF.

The state-of-the-art mobile facility provides students with a fictional life situation, a marital status, children, a job and a salary.

They are then challenged to create and successfully use a budget and make decisions around saving, spending, investing and philanthropic giving. To achieve these tasks, students work in groups and visit 19 kiosks with interactive terminals that simulate stores, restaurants and utility companies, among other real-world businesses.

“JA Finance Park is in its second full year of operation, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the impact it’s having,” said Erica Irvine, vice president of operations. “The program covers the 14 financial literacy standards required by the state for graduation and culminates with an interactive, daylong simulation where students see firsthand how choices they make today regarding education impact their future and their ability to budget and pay for both needs and wants. We are so thankful for the steadfast support we’ve received from Cherokee Nation and the foundation, and we look forward to working together to inspire students and prepare them for success.”

In addition to the classroom programs, Cherokee Nation became the first tribe to set up a commercial space in JA BizTown, a kid-sized city teaching financial literacy and life lessons through hands-on application. Each year CNF works with Cherokee Nation Businesses to sponsor school trips to the Tulsa facility. More than 40 schools and 2,600 students have visited JA BizTown so far this academic year.

For more information about JA program opportunities throughout the Cherokee Nation, contact Janice Randall at (918) 207-0950.