ERIC ROSE /Bahamas Information Services

NASSAU, The Bahamas – The 85 ‘Most Distinguished Achiever’ nominees have taken their Junior Achievement experience to a higher level and maximized their potential as leaders, JA executive director Lionel Elliott said.

“You have excelled to the very top as most distinguished achievers and we have all come to celebrate you,” said Mr. Elliott.

He was speaking who on behalf of Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, the Hon. Desmond Bannister, at JA’s certificate and medal presentation ceremony at Government House, June 26. “This is indeed your moment.”

Mr. Elliott said the event was a “strategic focus in the celebration of excellence and the hard work of youth in our country.”

The students deserve the very best and the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture would have it no other way, he added.

“Through the continued partnership between local businesses and the Ministry, an enhanced JA programme conducts the balanced preparation and skills development of our nation’s youth,” Mr. Elliott said.

“It is gratifying to see a group of motivated young men and women who are doing the right thing and are actively engaged in a positive life-changing programme, while equipping themselves to master all areas of Bahamian business operations.”

The theme for this year in Junior Achievement is ‘Celebrating Excellence – Embracing the Destiny that Awaits.

After 30 years of economic education, Junior Achievement Bahamas deserves to be celebrated, he said.

“As future merchants in training, your parents, teachers and advisors have invested much time and resources to ensure that you begin to embrace the destiny that awaits each of you,” Mr. Elliott said. “I challenge all of you to never stop striving to be the very best.”

The Ministry, through the JA programme, will put in place and strengthen strategies for the systematic growth and enhancement of the curriculum to ensure that all high school students throughout the Bahamas benefit from “an unforgettable JA business experience.”

“Your faces show the proud look of successfully completed tasks and projects,” he said. “All of you have gone beyond the call of duty.

“You have sold stocks, produced high quality products, closed the one-on-one sales, passed the exams, attended the events, delivered the great speeches and of course triumphed through your interviews.

“As leaders, you are expected to share the good news with your friends. Let them know that JA can help them to accomplish their goals.

“You are all now JA ambassadors. Let your classmates know that your future is that much brighter because of JA.”

Mr. Elliott also commended the dedicated parents, enthusiastic advisors, and general supporters who came to celebrate with the honorees. He urged them to continue to encourage the students.

Mr. Elliott said the Government will invest $200,000 in JA.

In these challenging times, he said, the Government recognizes the value of developing the country’s next generation of business leaders so that they can make a significant contribution to the growth of the Bahamas.”

He challenged Junior Achievers to set their sights on new ideas, new products and new services.”

“Plan your business, study the markets and execute,” he said. “You are now equipped with valuable information to impact, in a very meaningful way, the economy of The Bahamas.”