Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee has been inspiring and preparing young people in the Middle Tennessee region to succeed in a global economy since 1957. They have been providing in-class instruction and bringing elementary school students to their current BizTown immersion program since 1990. Since 2016, they have been planning and fundraising to expand this immersion experience to middle and high school students through the Finance Park program.
The Finance Park space adds 7,600 SF of auditorium, career exploration, and learning stations for program volunteers, leaders, and students to gather and learn. Each learning station acts as its own storefront for a sponsoring business or institution to teach students how to create a budget based on their theoretical income. For example, some stations focus on insurance, education, housing, investments, and everyday items like groceries and clothing.
The design of the new space caters to an older audience of students by providing comfortable furniture for lounging with small pops of color. The simple forms of the stations allow each institution to create their own experience within the space using graphic signage and tv monitors for display. Adding some warmth and to connect the spaces, wood elements were incorporated to create built-in seating and a dropped ceiling in the dining area for a more intimate environment.