Skip to main content

Junior Achievement

One of our largest financial education initiatives is our partnership with Junior Achievement (JA) of Georgia to educate middle school students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial well-being through an experiential learning environment.

Providing Financial Literacy & Education

Two of Georgia United Foundation's cornerstones are financial well-being and education. That’s why we partner with Junior Achievement (JA) of Georgia on multiple levels. Georgia United Credit Union has been a financial supporter of the JA Discovery Centers across the state since 2015 and is currently one of only two businesses that sponsor all five of the JA Discovery Centers in Atlanta, Gwinnett, Cumming, Dalton, Savannah Center and Augusta coming for the 2023-24 academic year.

Discovery Centers are high-impact education centers that allow middle school students to experience learning like never before. Following a series of in-class sessions, JA Discovery Centers bring education to life and provide students with an immersive learning experience giving them a glimpse of what their futures could hold – from continuing education to career choices. Companies like Georgia United sponsor storefronts in this simulated economy to give thousands of students exposure to real-life skills that will be used for years to come.

JA currently receives Georgia United Foundation’s highest level of grant support. Our commitment to JA comes from the top as our CEO Debbie Smith is an officer of the Board of JA of Georgia. If you would like to help the foundation support JA or other programs, click here to learn more


Georgia United has been recognized by JA each year for providing volunteers to teach middle schoolers about real-life finances and entrepreneurship through the JA Discovery Centers. JA volunteers help show students how concepts learned in the classroom are applied in everyday life while in an environment that allows them to test out those scenarios in a hands-on experience. This empowers the students to own their economic success.

Georgia United volunteers also provide business coaching through the JA 3DE program for high schoolers and JA Inspire Virtual Career Fairs.

Volunteering for Junior Achievement is a great way to share your personal and professional experiences with students in our community. As a volunteer, I get to encourage and empower kids to be a ‘grownup’ for the day and teach money management in a fun environment.
- Amanda H., Marketing Manager, Georgia United Credit Union
Georgia United's support across our entire portfolio of programming and locations is integral to our work at JA of Georgia. The company’s leadership, passion and employee engagement help provide authentic experiences for our students that inspire their future possibilities and instill the relevance of their education to those futures.
- John H., President & CEO, Junior Achievement of Georgia
Whether volunteering for JA BizTown or Finance Park, I get the chance to be a part of student discovery and exploration of business and personal finance. Sharing my professional experience is a wonderful reminder for me of what it’s like for students who are just discovering all that goes into the functions of running a business, as well as what students have to learn to navigate their finances as they move into adulthood. It’s always a great experience witnessing students realize just how much their choices will impact their success as future professionals.
- Ryan M., Mortgage Underwriter III, Georgia United Credit Union
When asked why I volunteer it took me a moment to come up with a way to put this into words. The easiest way to explain this is to say that volunteering is a part of me. I have volunteered in some way for most of my life. Volunteering with JA has become very important to me. I have enjoyed sharing my experiences with students and it is very rewarding when you are able to see that you have made a positive impact and impression on the students. Each time I have volunteered I have had a different experience and each time I have felt that I have benefited as well as the students.
- Veronica B., Sr. Staff Accountant, Georgia United Credit Union