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Last Updated: 06/29/12

Corporate Social Responsibility News Archive

News Archive

High School Students from Across Chicago Spend a Day at the Fed

On February 15, 2012, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago opened its doors to Junior Achievement (JA) of Chicago and more than 90 students from three city-based high schools:  Percy Julian, Schurz and Young Women Leadership Charter School (YWLCS), for a day at the Fed. As it celebrates the twentieth anniversary of its partnership with JA, the Bank is planning a series of events in 2012, of which this “JA in a Day at the Fed” was the first. 


JA is a global organization with chapters in many cities, dedicated to educating students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs. As part of its commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility, the Bank has embarked in a number of partnerships that bring financial literacy and mentoring opportunities to girls’ high schools and high schools with a majority of their student population designated as minority. These events rely mainly on volunteers from the Bank willing to spend some of their time teaching and inspiring young men and women.


On behalf of the Bank’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Senior Vice President Valerie Van Meter kicked-off the day by thanking Bank staff volunteers and JA partners, and welcoming the schools. During the day, the students learned what the Fed does and why controlling inflation is so important. They also toured the Money Museum, and participated in activities that increased their self-knowledge and challenged them to think about the pros and cons of entering the world of work right after high school versus continuing their education by going to college.


“JA in a Day” allowed employee Norman Baldwin from Statistics to introduce to students concepts and ideas he wasn't exposed to at their age. “Some may argue that that fifteen or sixteen is too early to begin planning a career,” he said, “but in a job market with steadily increasing competition, students need to prepare themselves much earlier than I did.” A total of eight volunteers from the Bank participated in the event as teachers.


Coming to the Bank is not only a great educational experience for the high-schoolers, but also an opportunity for the schools and the Fed to develop closer partnerships and learn more about each other. Many of these public high schools rely on partnerships with corporations and entities like the Fed to fully flesh out their curriculums and offer teachers and students programs outside of their classrooms. Jessica Tansey, Volunteer and Programs Coordinator at YWLCS was “thrilled” to hear teachers and students talk about how much fun they had participating in activities, touring the Money Museum, and having shredded money to take home. For more information about the Chicago Fed’s commitment to financial literacy and mentoring in high schools, contact Roberto Requejo at (312) 322-2125 or via e-mail.

Chicago Fed Partnership with Junior Achievement and Local Schools Turns 20

The year 2012 will mark the 20th anniversary of the Chicago Fed’s partnership with nonprofit Junior Achievement (JA). The JA’s mission is to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy. The Chicago Fed will continue offering staff volunteers in Chicago and Detroit to teach students about financial literacy and encourage them to pursue business careers. Over the past 19 years, Bank volunteers have visited over 350 K-12 classrooms, and more than 400 students have participated in Job Shadowing Days at the Fed. A group of volunteers coordinates a “Bowl-a-Thon” fundraiser every year, which has raised over $50,000 to date for JA. The partnership with JA connects several pillars of the Bank’s Corporate Social Responsibility strategy, including financial literacy, economic education, outreach and volunteerism.


In 2012, Chicago-based Bank volunteers will have the opportunity to support high school students through a number of events in partnership with JA and three local high schools: Young Women Leadership Charter School, Percy Julian and Schurz. Students from these high schools will visit the Bank to participate in “JA in a Day at the Fed,” a daylong session of economics and finance mini courses taught by Bank employees. The Bank is also offering an “Ask the Expert” program, which connects employees with classrooms where they can share career experiences with students.


In Detroit, Hamtramck High School students will learn economics and finance in the coming year, and will also participate in the "JA Be Entrepreneurial" competition, an interdisciplinary program that supports the attainment of academic standards in entrepreneurship while helping students develop and organize their own business plans. Both Chicago and Detroit offices will continue offering Job Shadowing Days in 2012.

Chicago Fed Hosts Business Development Forum

Representatives of roughly 50 minority- and women-owned businesses gathered November 30 at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago (FRBC) to discuss the current economic landscape and how to grow their companies in the coming year.


The half-day conference was titled “New Strategies for a New Economy,” and more than 85 business professionals attended. They discussed the challenges of the new economy, the characteristics of scalable suppliers, and strategic alliances to grow a business. A Bank economist also presented an overview of national and regional economic conditions. Read more... 

 

Crain's Chicago Business Special Insert Highlights Chicago Fed's Diversity and Inclusion Program

A special insert in a recent edition of Crain Chicago Business showcases many of the Bank's efforts to promote diversity and inclusion. Read more... 

 

Best Practices in Supplier Diversity

On August 3, 2011, the Bank hosted 55 members of the Federal Reserve's National Procurement Office (NPO), Senior Procurement Officers (SPOs) and OMWI (Office of Minority and Women Inclusion) Directors for a full-day workshop on best practices in supplier diversity. The workshop brought these business stakeholders from the Reserve Banks and Board of Governors together to share the methods they use and challenges they face as they continue to enhance supplier diversity practices into the Fed's operations and strategies. Read more... 

Latino Resources Associate Co-hosts Summer Enrichment Event

On July 29, 2011, the Chicago Fed's Latino Resource Association (LRA) partnered with the National Society of Hispanic MBAs Chicago (NSHMBA Chicago) Summer Enrichment Program (SEP) to host a group of high school students at the Bank in the final part of a four-week business and college prep course. Read more... 

Chicago Fed Procurement Manager Receives Diversity Business Award

Robert Bohaty accepting award
Robert Bohaty (center) accepts CMSDC award.

Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Procurement Manager Robert Bohaty was recently awarded the Chicago Minority Supplier Diversity Council (CMSDC) Buying/Contracting Executives award. He accepted the award on behalf of the Chicago Fed for the bank’s commitment to working with minority and women-owned businesses. Read more...

Speed Mentoring to Success

The Chicago Fed June 23 hosted a career preparation "speed mentoring" event that connected 20 college students from the Chicago Scholars Foundation with six local executives from the Chicago United (CU) Leaders Council. The event gave students the opportunity to share their career strategies and get practical advice from successful business leaders. Chicago Fed Senior Vice President Valerie Van Meter, a CU Leaders Council member, represented the Bank and offered counsel as a mentor.