How Civic Engagement Creates Quality Workforce and Informed Citizens in Colorado

Learn how organizations like Junior Achievement-Rocky Mountain and the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce are promoting civic engagement.
civic engagement
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A thriving economy depends on recruiting and retaining a quality, educated workforce. Recruiting and retaining a quality and educated workforce depends on building a community of informed and active citizens. So how do we build an informed and active society that can address these workforce challenges? Civic engagement.

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Civic engagement is described as how individuals strive to improve the quality of life in their community by becoming involved in activities that address issues of public concern. Successful civic engagement initiatives are dependent on community members considering themselves to be an integral part of society and accepting a level of personal responsibility for addressing community challenges. Such people recognize the moral and civic impact of issues facing their own community and are willing to engage personally to correct them.

Colorado is fortunate to have organizations like Junior Achievement-Rocky Mountain (JA) and the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce (DMCC) that lay the groundwork for individuals to engage and make a positive impact in their communities throughout their lives. Both offer educational programs that inspire youth and young adults to value civic engagement in overcoming the challenges our state faces.

Junior Achievement’s primary focus is to help young people ages 5 to 25 become more financially literate, work and career ready and — even better — able to start or run a business, should they choose that path. Personal finance, business ownership, or just having a good job are impacted by decisions made by elected and appointed leaders at every level of government.

This is why civics education is an area covered in JA’s learning experiences. We expect our young people to become adults who can make informed decisions about buying a home, saving for retirement, borrowing for college, or applying for permits and licenses to start a business. But this expectation should be accompanied with the knowledge needed to understand how policymakers and regulators influence these aspects of our daily lives. It is critically important that we all stay informed about how our government works and engage in democracy.

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Like JA, the DMCC promotes greater civics knowledge and civic participation with middle school students through the Metro Denver Civics Bee. But we continue learning throughout our careers, and Chamber leadership programs are transformative for adult business professionals who are looking to elevate their engagement in civic leadership.  We build and equip community champions through in-depth education and experiences with a close network of personal and professional relationships. 

The significant value that early and continued training in civic engagement provides our communities cannot be overstated. Informed and active citizens make for a strong state, a strong economy, and a strong workforce, and our continued prosperity depends on the strength of all three. 


Sengrwise046 CJjamentRobin Wise is the President & CEO of Junior Achievement-Rocky Mountain and J.J. Ament is the President & CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce.

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