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Annual Junior Achievement Stock Market Challenge goes Virtual and Fall Winners Announced

(Buffalo, NY) – This year’s disruption in the high school learning environment did not prevent the annual JA
Stock Market Challenge from happening this year. The volunteers and staff at Junior Achievement of Western
New York quickly developed a virtual format for this year’s program. During the week of November 16-20th,
over 596 students from 25 WNY high schools experienced the realities of the stock market trading through a
virtual simulation and competed for the top 10 spots to earn prizes. Prior to the JA Stock Market Challenge, JA
provides an educational program called JA Take Stock in Your Future.
Northwest Bank is the Presenting Sponsor of this unique JA program. “Northwest is proud to be the presenting
sponsor of the JA Stock Market Challenge for the third consecutive year. We applaud the Junior Achievement
team for continuing to invest in the youth of WNY. On behalf of the entire team, we are proud of all the student
participants and wish you continued success” says Trina Burruss SVP Community Relations Officer at
Northwest Bank.

Students from all over WNY competed with a starting portfolio of $25,000. The competition was closely
tracked, and the leaderboard was shared each day. Students were using an online program called
HowTheMarketWorks and made their trades using real stock values. Following current events and their
impacts on the market were more important than evet this year.

You can follow the program action on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube using the hashtag

At the closing bell, 4:00 pm EST on Friday, November 20, 2020, Junior Achievement (JA) is pleased to
recognize Jaidel Johnson from Jamestown High School, as the first-place winner of the 2020 JA Virtual
Stock Market Challenge with a 15.9 percent ROI and a net value of $28,998.06.
Taking second place is Clara Wood from Batavia High School. She finished with a 13 percent ROI and a final
value of $28,272.08. “I loved being able to use my knowledge I have on current world topics to predict the
trends we would be seeing in the stock market. I invested in multiple electric vehicle stocks because I believe
they are the future, especially because of the push for more environmentally friendly ways of life. I think in the
future it would be really interesting to see the outcome of this contest over a time period longer than a week in
order for a more realistic experience!” says Clara Wood.

The third place winner is Ryan Steiner from Hamburg High School with an 8.8 percent ROI and a final value
of $27,218.67. “I thought the game was a really great idea considering the circumstances with COVID. I am
surely grateful for the fact I got to compete in this challenge with Junior Achievement. I already traded stocks
so it was something fun to do throughout the day, check how I was doing on the leaderboards. I figured, why
not try to do super well in this, so I researched stocks and day/swing traded stocks this week and gave it my best
shot. This challenge has been a blast!” says Ryan Steiner.

Rounding out the Top 10 rankings are competition entries from:

4th place: Hamburg High School, Ben Siskowski 6.9% ROI
5th place: North Tonawanda High School, Chase Luly and Jackson Chlebowy 6.6% ROI
6th place: BPS197 Math Science & Technology, Diamond Hyson and Talia Payne 5.8% ROI
7th place: Alexander High School, Kelsey Kautz 5.6% ROI
8th place: Amherst Central High School, Ava Murak 4.8% ROI
9th place: Fredonia High School, Dawson Bird 4.58% ROI
10th place: Alexander High School, Amanda Puricelli, 4.46% ROI

The top 4 students received an iPad Air donated by HSBC Bank. Student teams placing 5th, 6th and 7th received
wireless headphones donated by BlueCross BlueShield of WNY and a Perry’s Ice Cream fun pack of coupons
donated by Perry’s Ice Cream. Teams placing 8th, 9th and 10th received a $50 gift card donated by Tops
This virtual program will repeat April 19-23, 2021 and is open to any WNY area school, grades 8-12. For
classroom interest, please contact Alycia Ivancie at

Participating Schools:
Erie County: Alden High School, Amherst Central High School, BPS #197 Math Science Tech Prep, BPS
#198 Prep High School, City Honors, Clarence High School, Depew High School, East Aurora High School,
Eden High School, Emerson School of Hospitality, Hamburg High School, Maryvale High School, Mount St.
Mary Academy, West Seneca East High School, West Seneca West High School.
Niagara County: Lockport High School, Niagara Falls High School, North Tonawanda High School.
Genesee County: Alexander High School, Batavia High School, Pembroke High School.
Chautauqua County: Falconer High School, Fredonia High School, Jamestown High School.
Cattaraugus County: Allegany-Limestone Central School.

This program is not possible without support from Sponsors:
Presenting – Northwest Bank; Additional support
from: The Lenna Foundation; HSBC Bank; Bryant & Stratton College; Tops Friendly Markets; Perry’s Ice
Cream; Zgoda and Associates CPAs,; Medaille College; BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York; PwC;
Reid Family Foundation. Confer Plastics Inc.; Curbell, Inc.; Deloitte; Evans Bank; KPMG LLP; Lawley; Linde;
Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman LLP; National Fuel; Niagara University; Phillips Lytle LLP; SEFCU; Seneca
Foods Foundation; Uniland Development Company; WSF Industries, Inc.; West Herr Automotive Group
Financial Trust Federal Credit Union, Freed Maxick CPAs; Gramkee Financial Consulting, KeyBank N.A.;
Lambert & Co.; Lakelet Capital LLC, Monofrax;, Stahlka Agency; TriMain
Development; Wells Fargo Bank N.A.; Vanner Insurance.

Proceeds from the JA Virtual Stock Market Challenge support Junior Achievement’s financial literacy,
entrepreneurship, and career & work-readiness pathway programs for kindergarten-12th grade students. For
more information about Junior Achievement programs, visit

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