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Sponsor Spotlight: Janus Invests in the Future
At Young Americans, we believe that the best learning occurs when students get to participate—whether it’s opening their own bank account in the Young Americans Bank or running their own shop in Young AmeriTowne. This mission fits in perfectly with Janus Capital Group, a supporter of our programs for the last 16 years. Janus Foundation, the giving arm of the world-renowned investment firm, strives to, “create opportunities to help children succeed and achieve their goals and aspirations through education.”
As the sponsor of Towne Hall at Young AmeriTowne in Denver and Lakewood, Janus creates a real space for students to get their first glimpse of government. In preparation for their day in Towne, students participate in both a primary and general election to choose a Mayor and Judge for their Towne.
The Mayor leads the Towne, making decisions about which businesses receive licenses to operate as well as listening to citizens’ suggestions for improvement. After acting as Mayor for her school’s day in Towne, 11-year-old Hailey writes, “It was amazing being Mayor, but I had a lot of responsibilities.”
The Judge manages the judicial system, ensuring that students follow Towne laws. Students must follow Young AmeriTowne laws that prohibit running, gum chewing, and leaving Towne, and they must also follow each school’s unique laws such as dancing in front of the Radio Station. Any student caught breaking the law must pay a fine.
Towne Hall also houses the AmeriTowne Police Department, the Towne Hall Accountant, and the Parks and Recreation Manager. Rather than being elected,students interested in these positions complete a job application and attend a job interview before being selected. Each position has an important role to play in keeping the Towne safe, financially responsible, and beautiful. And thanks to Janus, students can bring home their very own business card as a special memento of their day.
Students visiting Young AmeriTowne do more than read about government in a textbook—they experience civics for themselves in a real setting. Young Americans is grateful to Janus for its investment in today’s youth!