One of the two teams that represented Guam at the Asia-Pacific Junior Achievement Competition won the bronze award during a recent ceremony in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Team “Home” was composed of 36 members representing five high schools in Guam: Simon Sanchez High School, JFK High School, Southern High School, Fr. Duenas Memorial School, and Academy of Our Lady of Guam High School. The team's advisers were Bojo Molina, Jesse Santos, and Al Almira.
The winning team, sponsored by Tan Holdings Corp., was represented by 2012 JA Guam President of the Year Erika Tsuji of Academy of Our Lady of Guam; VP Human Resources Peter Paul Paragas; 2011 JA Guam VP of the Year for Finance Anthony Ermitano; VP Marketing Julio Dizon, and VP Production Andrew Ermitano of Father Duenas Memorial School, along with adviser Joey Miranda III and executive director Beth Lizama.
According to Miranda, the 12-week JA program began in September and ended in December. Each team was tasked with starting up and eventually liquidating a company. Three trade fairs were held during the course of the program. A two-minute commercial was also required of each company, with an annual report and business presentation due at the conclusion of the program along with an interview by judges made up of executives representing various companies on island.
Immediately after being named winners in the local competition, Miranda's team was informed by JA that they will be representing Guam in the Asia-Pacific competition.
“In the end, all the hard work paid off for us. My officers made it a point to enjoy the competitive atmosphere in Kuala Lumpur and in the process became the life of the competition. During the first day of competition I was flanked by several advisers from various teams congratulating me on their performance as they stood out amongst all other presenters,” Miranda told Saipan Tribune yesterday.
Guam sent two teams to the event including the 2012 JA Company of the Year “LEGIT” sponsored by First Hawaiian Bank. The team was composed of president Kiana Artero, 2012 Vice President of the Year for Human Resources Angelo Martinez, VP Finance Paul Kaneshiro, VP Marketing Eurich Patacsil, VP Production Anna Bordallo, and adviser Jessica Artero.
The Asia-Pacific competition featured 17 teams representing 10 countries including China, Guam, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Korea, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkmenistan, and host Malaysia. Turkmenistan was named Company of the Year with a thermal bag product made of natural materials and leftover jeans, while Thailand finished a close second with an invertible pillow. Home's product was a Web-based program complemented by a USB and pillowcase.
The JA program teaches students how to own and operate their own business, from beginning to end, with the mentorship of company sponsors.
JA Worldwide and Asia-Pacific president Dr. Lynda Rhymer, during the awarding rites, recognized the hard work of the local team “Home.”
“This group overcame so many obstacles and struggles during the JA Program, but their perseverance and experience helped guide them through. They were able to think outside the box and come up with an innovative product that has the potential to unite people through a fun experience that would help their community,” stated Rhymer during the ceremonies.