“I found my niche”

Charles McCarthy found his place in Junior Achievement while talking with a friend, Bob Yager. Bob challenged Charlie with the simple task to “teach the kids.”

Bob invited Charlie to be a guest presenter for his  8th grade JA class where he was to teach the students about how to write a business plan. What started out as a 30-minute presentation, turned into an hour long discussion that would pave the way to the next years of Charlie’s life. “I got excited…the kids got excited! I found my niche,” said Charlie.

Over the past ten years, Charlie has volunteered to deliver JA programs at all grade levels, but finds his most rewarding experiences are with high school students. While teaching the JA Be Entrepreneurial program to a group of 12th grade students, Charlie had an experience that still makes him smile from ear to ear – six students created a song and dance to thank him for all he had done.

Charlie has incredible experience to share with his students; he is an entrepreneur who has opened three companies in the past 15 years. “Volunteering is my way to give back to the community,” says Charlie. Sharing his wisdom, experience and knowledge with students who can learn from his journey as an entrepreneur is a “no brainer” for Charlie. “Everyone should do it,” he said.

Thank you to Charlie and all of the volunteers who lead by example, giving real-world meaning to JA’s curriculum and helping students become more optimistic about school, work and life.