JA Alumni Story: Vijay Kapur

Posted in: Alumni Stories

“There are few things [in life] where you can learn and have fun at the same time – JA BizTown and classroom programs are some of them.” Vijay Kapur’s JA journey dates back to high school where he got to see, first-hand, how much of an impact JA programs can make. He has since spent his life inspiring others to get involved.

During Vijay’s senior year of high school, he recalls a JA volunteer came to his economics class. They spoke of JA programs and how they impact kids from a young age. Vijay was inspired by the volunteer’s words and wanted to get involved. He was presented with an opportunity to take a JA lesson on financial literacy and present it to elementary school students. This was the kick-start to his philanthropic endeavors.

Vijay remembers the experience being nerve-wracking. “I brainstormed ideas with my peers and was so nervous the day of,” he reflected. “This was a great public speaking opportunity, but I was still a kid myself.” Nevertheless, Vijay had an incredibly rewarding experience. He recalls how excited the young students were to learn from a “high-schooler” and how intrigued they were by the content. From that moment on, Vijay was hooked.

Since graduating, Vijay has been an avid volunteer in the community and especially with Junior Achievement of Arizona. He has provided classroom lessons, helped in JA BizTown, and has even assisted at JA golf tournaments and the JA Stock Market Challenge. Now, he encourages others to give back as well. “That high school experience inspired me to get more involved in my community through volunteering. I want to inspire others to do so, too.”

Vijay now works in financial services and attributes his interest in the economic industry and his foundational financial skills to JA. But the real reward is the appreciation from the student he now volunteers with. “Students have a real connection with the volunteers and gain confidence in themselves,” said Vijay in his recent interview. “Once you finish volunteering, you realize how much fun it is and see the genuine gratitude from the classroom.”

He also sees the larger implication of how JA programs can positively change society. “Money is one of the most important things for people. If they have an understanding of money at an early age, they can be more responsible adults and better members of the community.” We appreciate Vijay for what he has done for JA and Arizona’s students.