Highland Home JAG installs leaders

By William West and Trey Flowers
Special to The Luverne Journal

On Dec. 5, the Highland Home chapter of Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) in conjunction with the National Career Association (NCA), held its annual initiation and installation ceremony to install its student-elected leaders for the 2023-24 school year. The ceremony was led by JAG Specialist Leslie Flowers and the keynote speaker was Commissioner Raymond McGough.

During the ceremony the chapter was recognized for its second consecutive NCA Knowledge Bowl National Championship win and for placing sixth in the nation in the L.O.V.E. Project event.

Four representatives of the JAG chapter’s new chief sponsor, Geico, were special guests at the event and they presented the chapter with a check for $2,500. The funds will be used to expand the student’s competition apparel and help with travel costs for competition.

“A student that feels more confident and sure of him/herself, will compete on a new level if they feel dressed and ready for the occasion.” Flowers said. “I can’t stress enough the change I see in a student’s confidence and performance when they put that NCA Uniform on.”

Leslie Parker, operations manager with Geico noted that the impact of the JAG program at Highland Home School has created a wave of positivity.

“You can see that these students are greatly impacted by the program,” Parker said. “It’s an incredible thing we see happening at Highland Home School with JAG and we are pleased to be a part of making sure they are successful.”

The event fell on the heels of another notable event involving Highland Home JAG, where two students and their specialist attended the National Student Leadership Academy in Washington D.C. While in Washington, Amber Majors, Alabama JAG/NCA president and Savannah Edgar, Highland Home School president elect, were able to attend a gift ceremony where state leaders presented 2,800 pairs of socks to the Salvation Army Warehouse to be gifted to the needy. The socks were procured from all over the state from various JAG programs including the one at Highland Home.

The chapter has experienced many recent successes in not only competitive events, but also in working towards increasing grade point averages (GPA), attendance rates, WorkKeys tests scores and in helping students be ready for life beyond graduation. Of JAG’s recent graduates at HHS, 100% had a college or career plan mapped out prior to leaving high school.

In addition, this is the first of many JAG student-written articles slated to run in The Luverne Journal.