Local teens place well in international competition

Teams from Penn High School placed well in an international competition.

They recently competed in the 2013 North American Junior Achievement Titan Tournament, taking on teams from the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Penn Seniors Victor Lu, James Schwartz, Kyle McGuire, and Jake Noeldner finished 4th in the two round online competition comprising 64 teams. Finishing 7th was the team comprised of Seniors Sam Sharkey, Erica Kirgios and Juniors Eric Lee and Timothy Liu. Also competing in the competition were Penn students Chris Mitchell, Thomas Bowers, Faisal Shariff and David Keve. The students were supported by Eric Bowers, Peter Riordan and Christopher Cantoni, Economics teachers at Penn High School.

"The JA Titan program does such a good job in teaching a variety of economic concepts that will give any student a basis that can be used for many aspects of their adult lives," says Eric Bowers, Economics teacher, Penn High School. "JA Titan also promotes a desire within students to see the effects of their decisions and encourages their entrepreneurial spirit that will drive their future success."

The three Penn teams that competed in the North American competition earned the right to represent Northern Indiana in the tournament by finishing in the top three spots in the TCU/JA Titan Challenge held at Bethel College in Mishawaka on March 8, 2013. Twenty-nine teams from high schools and intermediate schools throughout the Michiana area competed in the local rounds.

The members of the top three finishing teams in the local competition are awarded scholarships for college from both TCU Foundation and Bethel College. They are also eligible to be entered into the North American competition by their sponsoring JA.

Through the JA Titan program, CEO’s of the future get an early start making key business decisions during the online business simulation created by Junior Achievement. Using the simulation, teams of students run their own virtual companies, “manufacturing” and “selling” a fictional high-tech product. They compete for market share as they react to changing market conditions and make decisions that impact their business results. The computerized simulation encourages fair but competitive behavior, asking students to make business decisions about price, production, capital investment, research and development and marketing. The program also promotes skills such as situational analysis, time management, critical thinking, and decision-making.

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