From Local Impact to Regional Reach: Crossroads and Junior Achievement Chicago Empower Students Through JA Chamber Town Event

From Local Impact to Regional Reach: Crossroads and Junior Achievement Chicago Empower Students Through JA Chamber Town Event

Seven middle schools across Northwest Indiana attended JAChamber Town, an expanded collaborative effort between Crossroads Chamber of Commerce and Junior Achievement Chicago. Celebrating a decade of partnership, this year, both organizations empowered nearly 2,000 8th grade students, fostering financial literacy across the region.

Originating from their beginnings at Merrillville and Crown Point Middle Schools, the JAChamber Town Event has evolved into a cornerstone program for both organizations. It offers an invaluable opportunity for chamber members to contribute their time and expertise in teaching essential budgeting skills and instilling a mindset for future planning among young minds.

"This partnership exemplifies the power of community engagement and education, shaping the next generation of informed and prepared youth," said Roslyn Malouhos, Junior Achievement of Chicago's NW Indiana Division Director. "It's volunteers and local businesses partnering with JA that open up possibilities for students - when our youth succeeds, we all win!"

On Tuesday March 19th, 8th grade students from various schools across Northwest Indiana participated in this immersive financial education event. Hosted at the Dean and Barbara White Community Center in Merrillville, the daylong event witnessed enthusiastic engagement and active learning from students representing Gary Middle School, Pierce Middle School, Bailly STEM, Colonel Wheeler Middle School, Taft Middle School, Boone Grove Middle School, and Hanover Central Middle School.

"Our program empowers the next generation with the skills and knowledge they need to thrive in an increasingly complex financial landscape," said Deann, President and CEO of Crossroads. "Our longstanding partnership with Junior Achievement Chicago has allowed us to expand our reach and impact, ultimately shaping the future workforce of Northwest Indiana."

The JA Chamber Town Event reflects the Chamber's dedication to community development and educational enrichment. By bridging the gap between local businesses and schools, the event fosters a collaborative environment where students can gain practical insights and mentorship from industry professionals.

Crossroads continues to expand its footprint as "the Region's Chamber," initiatives like the JAChamber Town Event underscore its commitment to driving positive change and fostering economic prosperity throughout Northwest Indiana.

Event sponsors include Albanese Confectionary, Bosak Auto Group, Centier Bank, Financial Advisor Chase Lowden, Cleveland-Cliffs, Family Express, Horizon Bank, Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys, Members Source Credit Union, NW Indiana ER & Hospital, Old National Bank, Peoples Bank Purdue Federal Credit Union, R & M Partners, LLC and Chick-fil-A, as the lunch sponsor.