Press Releases

Students Make the Final Cut to Compete at Junior Achievement’s Company Program Competition on April 20, presented by the OtterCares Foundation

April 12, 2017



(SAN DIEGO, CA)  — Fourteen student companies have made the final cut to present their products and services to a panel of judges at Junior Achievement of San Diego County’s (JA) Company Program Competition. The event, presented by the OtterCares Foundation, on Thursday, April 20 will be held at JA headquarters in Mission Valley, located at 4756 Mission Gorge Place, San Diego, CA 92120. 

At Tuesday’s event, a panel of judges from OtterBox, PEERS Network, i.d.e.a. and Pro Back Office will review business plans and pick the top three winners.  The students will be judged on ingenuity, marketing and finance.

The top three teams chosen will have the opportunity to compete at the national JA Company of the Year Competition, presented by The Hartford, this summer in Washington, D.C.  

Teen companies participating in the event have successfully pitched their new start-up companies and secured outside funding from the PEERS Network Group at JA’s PitchFest in March, hosted for the first-time at SDG&E’s Energy Innovative Center.

The students represent schools from Canyon Crest Academy, Classic Academy Charter, San Dieguito High, San Diego High and Westview High

JA Company Program is a hallmark of JA, dating back to 1919. The program empowers students to start and manage their own businesses from the ground-up. Under the guidance of the JA mentor and teacher, the students decide on a product or service, market it to their classmates, family and neighbors, and carry the responsibility of managing company finances.  They dedicate 13 weeks inside the classroom learning how to build and run a successful company.  


DATE: Thursday, April 20

WHERE: Junior Achievement of San Diego County, 4756 Mission Gorge Place, San Diego, CA 92120

TIME: 4.30 p.m. –  5.30 p.m.

Judging of Booths and Business Plans 

6.30 p.m. –  8.15 p.m.

Team Presentations

8.15 p.m. – 8.30 p.m.

Awards for the most creative idea, best tradeshow booth and marketing plan.

First, second and third place winners


Coffishake. The Canyon Crest Academy team designed and created a portable coffee-shaker that allows you to brew hot coffee or tea on the go. Gaurar Dixit, a senior at Canyon Crest Academy student and one of the creators of teen company, Coffishake: "This program has been a remarkable learning experience for our team. It has taught us how to communicate effectively, delegate tasks and most importantly, make sure everyone on our team has a voice. We are excited about the April 20 competition and look forward to showcase our product, Coffishake to the judges.

HOP Carpool. The San Dieguito Academy team created a solution to an over-crowded traffic problem at their Encinitas high school with no buses during busy and hectic drop off/ and pick up times with a new car-pool business. Jack Hauser, a junior at San Dieguito Academy and CEO of teen company HOP Carpool: “Our company is dedicated to easing the pressure parents face daily by spending 45- minutes or longer stuck in traffic trying to pick up/drop off their kids from school. We want to eliminate this stress by connecting eligible student drivers with parents seeking a carpool service for their children for a price of $10. We feel confident about the quality of our service and look forward to the competition on Thursday.”

Revitalize Apparel. The San Dieguito Academy team makes used denim apparel fun again with creative designs and jewels. Taylor Mason, San Dieguito Academy student and Head Designer for Revitalize Apparel said. “Our products are very popular and we had fun selling our promoting them to our classmates, family and friends. We enjoy using lace, art, and jewels to bring life again to those denim jackets and jeans that you loved back in 80’s. We are so proud of our team's success and look forward to the competition."


Laura Bagheri, Vice President of Education Programs at Junior Achievement of San Diego County said: “This year’s landscape is incredibly diverse for our high school companies. Products and services include a solution to an over-crowded traffic problem at one local school with no buses and digital apps you can download to help budget your personal finances and explore local hot-spots. The creativity of these teens is unlimited and we are very proud of their success.”

Ken Schmitt, president of Turning Point Executive Search and JA Company Program Mentor said: “As a JA mentor for Canyon Crest Academy over the last three years, I can tell you students are amazed when they realize that starting a business can be a reality. The JA Company program is unique because it goes beyond the textbook and classroom, providing students the opportunity to turn their ideas into real, tangible businesses that generate real money. In my opinion there is no better way for young adults to learn than by actually doing and experiencing.”


ABOUT JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT OF SAN DIEGO Junior Achievement of San Diego County reaches 75, 000 students in K-12 classrooms in the 2016-2017 school year. Junior Achievement’s volunteer-based programs teach kids how to get a job, start a business and how to manage money. For more information please visit