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Avnet Provides 20,000 Arizona Students with Real World, Hands-on Technology Experience

Avnet donates $40,000 to Junior Achievement to Further STEM-Education

Phoenix, AZ – WEBWIRE

Avnet, Inc. (NYSE:AVT), a global technology distributor and the largest publicly-held company headquartered in Arizona, today announced its participation in Junior Achievement of Arizona’s signature program – JA BizTown®. Through this unique education program, fourth through sixth grade students in Arizona have the opportunity to operate simulated businesses in a student-sized town, built just for them. Avnet is providing both financial and volunteer support for the program to help students connect the dots between what they learn in the classroom to the technology industry.

Approximately 20,000 students from 225 Arizona schools will be exposed to real-world business circumstances through JA BizTown this school year. In-classroom lessons are combined with applications that enhance a student’s understanding of work ethic, economics, leadership and team work. Participating students will work diligently to apply their new skills to operate simulated businesses, pay back business loans and serve as contributing members of society for the day.

In the JA BizTown, Avnet is hosting two technology stores to excite students about career opportunities available related to the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) realm. The technology stores provide students with hands-on experiences including learning how to replace a faulty hard drive and assembling a computer. In addition, Avnet employees are volunteering throughout the year to guide and mentor students through the experience.

When students arrive at JA BizTown, they explore career options, interview for jobs, create business plans, calculate operating costs, and design a marketing plan. Students have the opportunity to apply for six different jobs at the Avnet stores: CEO, CTO, sales manager, computer hardware engineer, computer repair engineer and computer software engineer.

“The JA BizTown is a one of a kind experience that bridges classroom teachings and real-world knowledge, involving the entire community in preparing students for their future,” said Joal Redmond, vice president, public relations, Avnet, Inc. “Avnet decided to build the technology stores for JA BizTown to give students the opportunity to explore the inner workings of technology that is a part of their everyday lives and show how technology makes our world a better place to live, work and play. We hope the participating students will be as inspired and excited as we are by technology, ultimately providing them with the foundation to explore STEM-related careers.”

Avnet has donated more than $41,000 in funds and equipment to Junior Achievement of Arizona to build the two stores including laptops, furniture and a videogame experience. In addition, Avnet has created an exposed wall-mounted computer equipped with interactive lights to teach students how components work when the keys on a computer are pressed.

“Avnet has fulfilled our vision at Junior Achievement to open a technology shop in BizTown and enhance the STEM-related aspects of the program,” said Katherine Cecala, president of Junior Achievement of Arizona. “We are excited to welcome Avnet to the program to help young people explore career paths in a growing and high-demand industry in need of a future talented individuals.”

Avnet has a long-standing tradition of supporting nonprofit organizations, especially related to children’s education. Throughout the month of October, employees rolled up their sleeves in support of Avnet’s Global Month of Service, fixing up schools, feeding the homeless and raising funds for organizations that serve their local communities.

Photos of the Avnet JA BizTown can be viewed here.

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About Junior Achievement of Arizona
Junior Achievement is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that teaches children, kindergarten through high school, about financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship to  prepare them for success in a global economy. Serving Arizona’s youth since 1957, JA prepares young people for the real world by showing them how to become self-sufficient, how to create jobs which make their communities robust, and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace. Junior Achievement of Arizona reached more than 97,000 students during the 2014-2015 school year.  Follow JA on Twitter @JAArizona and like the organization on Facebook ( For more information, visit

About Avnet, Inc.
From components to cloud and design to disposal, Avnet, Inc. (NYSE:AVT) accelerates the success of customers who build, sell and use technology globally by providing them with a comprehensive portfolio of innovative products, services and solutions. Avnet is a Fortune 500 company with revenues of $27.9 billion for the fiscal year 2015. For more information, visit

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