National University System and Junior Achievement USA Create Nationwide Partnership to Benefit a Quarter Million Junior Achievement Supporters

New education partnership, established during landmark 100th anniversary of JA, is part of the National University System’s effort to develop market-ready employees and support career advancement through accelerated educational pathways and affordable college degrees

San Diego, CA – In celebration of Junior Achievement USA’s (JA) 100-year anniversary of teaching youth career readiness and life skills, National University System (NUS), a network of accredited, nonprofit universities serving over 45,000 working adults nationwide, is offering exclusive tuition rates and scholarship opportunities to JA associates and qualified JA volunteers and educators. The partnership reflects the shared commitment of both organizations to provide relevant education and career development programs that prepare current and future professionals with competencies and skills to succeed in an ever-changing economy.

The collaboration with JA is part of a wider NUS initiative to create affordable options for college degrees nationwide and aligns with both organizations’ emphasis on workforce preparedness. Through the partnership, NUS Workforce Education Solutions is piloting a program specifically for JA associates, volunteers, and educators that aims to accelerate degree completion to as little as one year, depending on prior education, and decrease the cost to as low as $5,000.

The partnership between Junior Achievement USA and the National University System also highlights the commitment of both organizations to develop the next generation of leaders. The NUS Sanford Harmony initiative is a PreK-6th grade social emotional learning (SEL) program that prepares youth with skills relevant to future workforce needs. Inspired by renowned philanthropist and JA Lifetime Laureate, T. Denny Sanford, Sanford Harmony curriculum emphasizes problem-solving, communication, empathy and critical thinking, diversity and inclusion, and improving peer and gender relationships – which are reported by the World Economic Forum as among the most increasingly valuable skills needed for success in the 21st century.

“The National University System congratulates Junior Achievement on their 100th anniversary and shares their dedication to prepare workforce-ready students and inspire lifelong learners to achieve academic and career goals by providing accessible world-class education programs,” said Dr. Michael R. Cunningham, Chancellor of the National University System and Lifetime Laureate of Junior Achievement-San Diego Business Hall of Fame. “This unique collaboration reflects the mission of the National University System to cultivate industry partnerships that focus on upskilling and workforce alignments to help meet the growing demand for a highly-skilled workforce.”

Jack E. Kosakowski, Junior Achievement USA President and CEO, said the program presents a unique opportunity to support the lifelong learning goals of their associates, volunteers, and educators. “Junior Achievement wouldn’t be able to impact more than 4.8 million students a year without the support of our volunteers, educators, and associates. This partnership with NUS provides us with a way of saying thank you to our key stakeholders, while in the process helping them achieve their professional goals.”

The JA partnership adds to the growing list of workforce partnerships the System has already established under the direction of Chris Graham, President of Workforce Education Solutions, with industry groups and public agencies representing healthcare, banking, public safety, K-12 and community college education.

This new program, which more specifically aligns with NUS banking and K-12 focus, enables JA’s 1,600 associates and nearly 250,000 volunteers, including business professionals, parents, and retirees, to pursue an associate, bachelor’s or master’s degree from an NUS affiliate school. This exclusive offer for JA supporters reaffirms National University System’s founding mission of meeting the education needs of adult workers by offering flexible, on-demand, market-relevant programs with personalized student support services. JA supporters across the U.S. can choose from over 100 of the System’s degree programs, including education degrees from National University’s Sanford College of Education – one of the top ten largest schools of education in the country and named for Denny Sanford, who participated in Junior Achievement as a child.

JA programs, taught by volunteers and coordinated through more than 100 area offices in all 50 states, reach more than 4.8 million students per year in over 200,000 classrooms. NUS shares JA’s dedication to educating youth through its global expansion of three Sanford Programs, inspired by Mr. Sanford. Sanford Harmony and Sanford Inspire support engaging and enthusiastic PreK-12 learning environments to positively impact children’s success in school, career and life. The Sanford Institute of Philanthropy provides education to nonprofit professionals to foster donor relationships and increase charitable giving within the communities they serve. To date, the Sanford Programs are reaching more than 8 million PreK-12 students, as well as educators and fundraisers.

The partnership, designed to provide opportunities for working adults to meet education and career goals, also offers one full-tuition, employee-only scholarship per year to study any program at a National University System affiliate. The scholarship recipient will be named at the National Leadership Conference in Colorado July 16-18, 2019.

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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 4.8 million students per year in 107 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.2 million students served by operations in 100 other countries worldwide. Junior Achievement USA is a member of JA Worldwide. Visit for more information.

About the National University System
National University System was established to meet the emerging challenges and demands of education in the 21st century. The System is uniquely aligned to connect a diverse population of students to a network of innovative educational programs that are relevant to their lives, careers, and the marketplace and are delivered in a format that respects competing life priorities. The affiliates of the System include National University, John F. Kennedy University, City University of Seattle, Northcentral University, and the Division of Pre-College Programs. The System also includes the national Sanford Programs: Sanford Harmony and Sanford Inspire, which provides educators with comprehensive lesson plans and activities to support PreK-12 student development and success, and the Sanford Institute of Philanthropy, which offers educational and training programs for frontline nonprofit fundraisers. For more information, visit