Junior Achievement Announces Winners of the 2022 National JA Social Innovation Challenge
(Colorado Springs, CO) – Three teams of Junior Achievement students representing the JA of New York have been selected as first-, second-, and third-place honorees at the national JA Social Innovation Challenge. The winning teams were selected from nearly 90 submissions from over 250 students across the country.
The challenge, which is made possible through the support of Chick-fil-A, Inc., is a national competition in which high school students are invited to submit their innovative ideas for improving and making an impact on their communities. Eleven student teams with the top ideas were selected as finalists and participated in an exclusive, virtual workshop experience during which Chick-fil-A innovation experts and entrepreneurs provided additional guidance and resources for transforming students’ ideas into reality. The JA Social Innovation Challenge workshop took place on April 25 and 26, 2022. Prizes for the top three winning teams are valued at up to $500 per student.
The winning teams are:
1st Place: The Garden Project, Edward R Murrow High School, Brooklyn, NY
The Garden Project, the portable garden, seeks to solve the food desert crisis for the community of Flatbush. Abandoned shopping carts will be turned into portable gardens with already planted herbs and vegetables and given to those less fortunate along with classes on how to take care of their garden. This innovative and sustainable idea will build a sense of community and annihilate the food crisis in Brooklyn.
2nd Place: Dungeons N' Dinings, Kings Park High School, Kings Park, NY
Dungeons N’ Dinings takes the idea of Dungeons and Dragons and turns it into a hangout space for all kinds of people. It has a board gamecafe’ that will be tailored to DND specifically, to really allow the players to be immersed in their game. It’s planned to have 3 or 4 fantasy-themed game rooms equipped with playing materials for groups to rent out and have a blast with their friends. Dungeons N’ Dinings will boost the creative mindset and social skills in children and adults alike.
3rd Place: Heart and Bowl, Harborfields High School, Greenlawn, NY
Heart and Bowl is a sustainable restaurant franchise. Heart and Bowl will be a restaurant that serves foods that can be put into bowls such as soups, ramen, salads, etc., and the leftovers will be served to local low income and homeless community members on certain hours of each day free of charge.
“Many young people want to make a difference in the world and creating social enterprises that help address challenges we all face is one way to do that,” said Jack E. Kosakowski, President and CEO of Junior Achievement USA. “We are thankful for Chick-fi-A’s support in helping our students explore the importance of social innovation.”
“At Chick-fil-A, we believe in caring for our communities, and through our long-standing partnership with Junior Achievement, we’re able to help empower our youth to become future leaders and community builders,” said Rodney Bullard, vice president of corporate social responsibility for Chick-fil-A, Inc. “It is our pleasure to support Junior Achievement and these students as they create a positive impact, one community at a time.”
The funding for the JA Social Innovation Challenge is part of Chick-fil-A’s commitment to expanding its partnership with Junior Achievement USA to support education initiatives. Through this commitment in the fall of 2020, Junior Achievement USA launched a redesigned JA Be Entrepreneurial® program to help high school students understand the concepts of innovation and entrepreneurship. The enhanced program, which has been part of JA’s high school programming for nearly 20 years, has been updated to include a completely re-imagined modular format introducing students to concepts such as creative problem-solving, how to think like an entrepreneur, business, planning, and innovating for the social good.
High schools interested in learning more about adding JA Be Entrepreneurial to their classroom curriculum should contact their local Junior Achievement office. For more information about Junior Achievement and programs like JA Be Entrepreneurial, visit www.JA.org.
About Junior Achievement USA® (JA)
Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA programs are delivered by corporate and community volunteers, and provide relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship. Today, JA reaches more than 2.5 million students per year in 103 markets across the United States as part of 10 million students served by operations in 100 other countries worldwide. Junior Achievement USA is a member of JA Worldwide. Visit www.ja.org for more information.
About Chick-fil-A, Inc.
Atlanta-based Chick-fil-A, Inc. is a restaurant company known for the Original Chick-fil-A® Chicken Sandwich and signature hospitality. Represented by more than 170,000 Team Members, Operators and Staff, Chick-fil-A® restaurants serve guests freshly prepared food at more than 2,700 restaurants in 47 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and Canada. The family-owned and privately held restaurant company was founded in 1967 by S. Truett Cathy and is committed to serving the local communities in which its franchised restaurants operate.
Known for its leadership and growth opportunities, in 2022 Chick-fil-A was named a Best Employer in America by Forbes and a top company for career opportunities for Black employees by Glassdoor. The company was also awarded the Employee’s Choice by Glassdoor honoring top CEOs and was named a Culture 500 Culture Champion in 2020. A leader in customer service, Chick-fil-A was named QSR magazine’s Drive-Thru Restaurant of the Year in 2021. More information on Chick-fil-A is available at www.chick-fil-a.com and @ChickfilANews.