MiraCosta College Professor Honored as JA's North County Volunteer of the Year
JA is delighted to recognize Delores Loedel as “JA Volunteer of the Year” for North County- Coastal. With her passion and dedication, the MiraCosta College Professor has helped JA reached a record-breaking 80,344 students this year. To celebrate the successful school year, we asked Professor Loedel to share her passion for a JA in the below Q&A segment:
How long have you been a JA volunteer?
I first volunteered with my eldest son's 5th grade class when they participated in Biz Town. This was seven years ago. Since then, I've volunteered with JA's Finance Park, with the JA Day at an elementary school, and several weekly sessions at a middle school and a high school. I am an accounting professor at MiraCosta College and have included volunteering at JA as an extra credit assignment for my students. Due to the favorable feedback that I've received from my students, I am currently in the process of implementing this as a Service Learning requirement in a few of my classes.
What do you find most rewarding about your role as a JA volunteer?
Financial Literacy is such an important area of education for our students. Unfortunately, this is not a required subject in our education system. If students have the opportunity to take a class, it is only through an elective in high school typically. JA helps to fill this void by offering financial literacy education. I feel that volunteering with JA is a way that I can give of my time and talents which I find extremely rewarding.
Do you think JA prepares our young adults to succeed beyond the classroom? If so, how?
Yes, definitely. As a college educator, we hear from employers what they are looking for in employees. They need skilled employees who are able to communicate in all forms, are team players, and are critical thinkers. The JA curriculum includes elements that help students develop all of these skills.
What was a particularly rewarding lesson you have taught as JA a volunteer?
They have all been rewarding, but the most rewarding lesson is the credit lesson that is taught to the high school students. Most of them don't realize how important a credit score is and that it can affect your ability to get insurance, an apartment, or even a job. When we go through the information about credit cards and interest rates, it is a real eye opener for many of them. It is such important information for all students to understand as credit can affect their lives in a good or very bad way.
Please share your favorite JA story.
I volunteered in a Kindergarten class once. I was nervous as I've never worked with children that young. They were all so excited to be there and so eager to learn. The JA lesson plans were at the perfect level for them and such a great introduction to the topics of Financial Literacy. I just had a big smile on my face the entire morning.