- How long have you been involved with JA?I rejoined JA as a volunteer the last 7 years. Earlier in my career, I had volunteered for a few of the JA in a Day programs.
- What got you involved with JA?I enjoy sharing my knowledge with young people and JA makes it easy with the various JA curriculums/programs. To my pleasant surprise, I have found students even in the second grade thoroughly enjoy it.
- What is your favorite JA story or moment?When I decided to re-engage in teaching the JA programs seven years ago, my office was located in Vernon, CT and that is where I wanted to volunteer. Accordingly, I submitted my volunteer paperwork and stated that I preferred working with middle or high school students. The JA coordinator informed me that the only opportunities in Vernon were at the elementary school. I initially was prepared to refuse that opportunity as I thought working with the older children was my strength. After some serious consideration, I decided to give it a try. I went to the elementary school and taught the civic program to that age group. After I completed the first lesson, one student raised his hand to ask a question. When I called on the student, he stated with disappointment "is that it?". Due to my preparation that I had put in to delivering that lesson, I felt crushed by that second grader's comment. Well, I figuratively picked myself back up and taught the remaining 5 lessons. On the last day of class that same child raised his hand to ask a question. I anxiously dreaded calling on him with the mental scare still present from my first encounter with him. Therefore, I slowly called on him to ask his question. The little boy said "Mr. Judge is this the last class?", I responded "Yes, it is." He retorted with serious disappointment "Awwww!". In the flash of a second, I now had the approval of my hardest critic and wanted to even teach the JA programs to the younger students. I continued happily teaching the JA programs at that elementary school for a few more years before I was requested to move my business office to Glastonbury, CT.
- Why are you passionate about JA?It allows me to share my business and economics knowledge with students.
- What is your favorite thing to do outside of work?Read books about business and investments
Thank you, Eric, for your great support, commitment, and dedication to Junior Achievement!