“Through JA, I can empower a young person”

Nicole Staudinger’s first experience with Junior Achievement dates back nearly 15 years. As a new officer for FirstBank, Nicole was introduced to Junior Achievement through the JA Bowl-A-Thon. She started volunteering in the classroom and after her first class of first graders, she was hooked!

In the past 15 years, Nicole has volunteered to teach several JA programs, most recently JA Our City. “I loved the light bulbs going off when we discussed sale taxes and why they are important to our communities,” said Nicole. “It amazes me the great conversations, ideas, and questions that come up even about topics that may seem abstract and boring like taxes.” She has also volunteered at JA Finance Park helping teens make intelligent, lifelong, personal financial decisions.  She has a goal of teaching middle school students next year.

Nicole’s experience with the JA Bowl-A-Thon has come full circle. Today she is not only a JA Bowl-A-Thon participant, but now she also leads her banks’ fund raising effort for the JA Bowl-A-Thon.  Serving the president of the Northern Colorado Junior Achievement Advisory Board, Nicole has exemplified leadership, providing invaluable guidance, support and driving financial and volunteer resources that support the mission.

Nicole truly believes in the power of community involvement in a child’s life. “At the banks, I daily see the financial successes and challenges a person faces,” said Nicole. “Financial literacy is at the root of most of those results. I know that we can make a difference in lives of children, young adults, and families.  Being able to share my business expertise and teaching the incredible Junior Achievement curriculum makes for a rewarding experience.”

Instilling a passion in free enterprise, entrepreneurship and personal financial literacy among Colorado students is important to Nicole because she believes that education is the key to unlocking opportunities. “We live in a country where nothing is out of reach,” said Nicole. “Through JA, I can empower a young person with knowledge. It instills a confidence in them to achieve great things!”