Press Releases

Celebrating the McGrath Family JA BizTown’s 10th Birthday!

June 13, 2017

The popular mini-city has employed nearly 126,000 5th grade students

SAN DIEGO, California (May xx, 2017)  – Junior Achievement of San Diego County (JA) is celebrating the McGrath Family JA BizTown’s 10th birthday party on Thursday, June 15th from 9am-10am at the Capdevilla Gillespie Center for Junior Achievement, located at 4756 Mission Gorge Place, San Diego, CA 92120.

As part of the celebration, Junior Achievement is asking supporters to help “light the way” by donating a candle which will be featured on a giant birthday cake during the special event. 

Since opening its doors ten year ago, the popular 10,000 sq. foot mini-city has “employed” nearly 126,000 5th grade students.  The young adults may not be old enough to drive, work or vote.  But that will not stop them from running a business, starting their own company, and earning a profit as they become “JA BizTown Citizens” for the day.   After four weeks of curriculum and preparation inside the classroom, 5th graders have to apply for a job and learn how a city’s economy works.  They then put their knowledge into practice by working a job at one of 21 life-sized San Diego businesses.  Students earn paychecks, open bank accounts, pay taxes, vote, and are challenged to earn a profit in their business.

“This interactive, project-based program teaches students how to manage their own personal finances and the importance of becoming a successful professional within our community,” said Marla Black, President and CEO at Junior Achievement.

This year, over 18,000 5th grade students have connected classroom learning to the real-world of adult responsibilities thanks to the interactive program.   JA BizTown serves students Monday-Friday during the school year and in July for summer camp.

Shop Sponsors

Junior Achievement greatly appreciates the dedicated Shop Sponsors for bringing this unique program to life with their financial and volunteer support.  They include: ABC-Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc., Cox Communications, EDCO, H.G. Fenton Company, Jack in the Box, Kaiser Permanente, Mission Federal Credit Union, NBC 7/39, Procopio, SDG&E, San Diego Humane SocietySan Diego International Airport, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, State Farm Insurance, Sea World, The San Diego Union-Tribune, The Super Dentists, The UPS Store, and U.S. Bank.


About JA of San Diego  

JA of San Diego's volunteer-delivered, kindergarten-12th grade programs foster work-readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills, and use experiential learning to prepare students for the real world. This year the nonprofit will reach 77,000 students with its life-changing financial literacy programs. JA invites you to join their mission to inspire and prepare tomorrow’s leaders for economic success.  Get involved now at: