JA Business Skills Pass Program

JA Business Skills Pass Program

By: Manell Queen Aquino

One of the newly passed laws is the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013, commonly known as the K-to-12 Act. Approved on May 15, 2013, the reform intends to provide adequate time for concepts and skills mastery, lifelong learning development, and employment preparation.

With the implementation of this program, schools and other institutions had to adapt their existing curriculums with the basic education curriculum provided by K-to-12. With its goal to equip future graduates with essential core values, lifelong competencies and relevant proficiencies, it is very crucial and important to provide guidance and assistance to students in choosing the career paths that they intend to pursue moving forward.

The JA Business Skills Pass Program gives quality and fundamental training and immersion to make training easier and accessible to every student. It aims and thrives to bridge connectivity, capability and economics for Grade 11 and Grade 12 students. Connectivity, by establishing connections and relationships not only between colleagues and students but also between different industries in implementing and promoting their businesses. Capability, by providing guidance and mentorship that serves as the training ground in honing and developing skills, talents and attitude to conquer the business world. Economics, by boosting the local economic scene through collaboration with local manufacturers and industries nationwide.

JA BE Entrepreneurial ™ is a 7-session module of business planning mentoring/workshop patterned to train and equip Grade 11 students in business planning and product development by learning the basics and producing their own business plan. Activities like these will give the students the necessary training, exposure and capabilities that they need in managing businesses.

JA Company Program ™ is a school-based mini-business simulation of business plan implementation. Similar to JA BE Entrepreneurial ™, students will be mentored by successful professionals who will provide utmost guidance and impart knowledge in digital marketing, sales and marketing strategy, finance and accounting and product concept and development throughout the process. Upon execution of the business plan, students will compete with other companies for the JA Company of the Year Award. This is a good opportunity, not just for students to showcase their business plans and strategies but also to harness connections and get to know other recipients of the program.

Aside from the JA BE Entrepreneurial ™ and JA Company Program ™, participants will also have the opportunity to undergo an intensified training program for leadership. This training program highlights transformational leadership, a type of leadership that encourages and empowers members to work for the greater good. This type of leadership is also proactive, and encourages team members to exchange values and ideas within their circle. With this type of leadership, team members are given more freedom to make their own choices, as motivated by their leader’s character, principles and goals. Leadership programs like this help give students a better view and idea of the type of leader they aspire to be. At some point in their lives, they will be given the chance to lead their own teams, businesses and projects and leadership skills will surely be one of their defining factors.


“And then, I realised how much you’ve seen yourself changed through the program and what the award really is. The FedEx Access Award is about connectivity. From the locals, down to you, down to the world. I think everyone is connected through that bag, down to the communities making the product, as well as the bag, so everything there is connected.” – Junris Lanuza, CEO of Hiraya, a company of 15 students from St. Scholastica’s College, Manila that makes bags made of pineapple fabric and synthetic leather. Hiraya is also the recipient of the 2017 FedEx Access Award. JA PH programs give the students an opportunity to have a glimpse of what happens to businesses from the planning to execution stage. Not only will they be involved in the preparation stage, but they will also have the chance to be involved in the grassroot level such as interacting with the manufacturers, familiarizing themselves with the specifications of the products and seeing the impact of what they do from a bigger picture. This will enable the students to have a sense of accountability in what they do, that beyond the materialisation of their plans and visions, they are still a part of a bigger and wider story that connects their products to the designers to the team members and lastly to the community that they envision to serve.


In the business world, everyone is paid in two coins: cash and experience; Take the experience first, and cash later.” -Harold Geneen. Where, as I enter the business world, I really do enjoy all the experience I gained. I am very grateful for the opportunity that I am a part of this. Joining this contest isn’t just about looking forward for the winner prize but taking all the ideas and lessons I learned throughout my journey. It made me discover my creativity, capability and skills.” – Anthonette Patrimonio, BSP Program participant from Hinigaran National High School. Hinigaran National High School is the first public secondary high school in Southern Negros. JA PH aims to provide equal opportunities to every student, regardless of socioeconomic status. In this fast-paced world where people give high regard to talents, qualifications and capabilities, it is definitely a must to acquire the necessary skills training to secure jobs and build businesses in the long run. JA BE Entrepreneurial ™ and JA Company Program ™, through the help of coaching and mentoring from established professionals, aspire to give students hands-on exposure and firsthand experience to different hard and soft skills needed to manage businesses. Exercises such as knowing the customer, exploring the market, utilizing your advantage, establishing healthy relationships, building the company hierarchy and structure, developing KPIs, framework, mission vision, creating the lean business plan and collaborating with the working team are helpful and important to keep businesses up and running.


Amidst the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of sectors had to make different adjustments and adapt to the demands of changing times. One of such sectors is the education sector, which had to transition to virtual and online learning from the conventional face-to-face school set-up. Aside from this, local businesses were also vastly affected by the lockdowns. Financial resources were mostly allocated to COVID-19 response such as vaccination rollout, contact tracing, isolation, quarantine, and government aid. Economic shock was experienced due to the lack of financial resources, shortage in manpower because of health concerns and logistics due to lockdown and protocols. Because of this, a lot of Micro small & medium enterprises (MSME) struggled to make both ends meet. With economic programs such as the JA BSP Program that caters to Filipino businesses, more and more industries are given the opportunity to promote their products and services. Since it provides guidance and direction from planning to execution of business plans, there will also be collaboration with other relevant businesses that can provide the necessary services to build a product. In a way, the students will take part in nation-building by contributing to economic growth and empowerment. Through the interaction and collaboration with relevant industries, partnerships will be born which will pave the way to more efficient and fruitful working relationships for both stakeholders. As early as the process of idea generation, the students will be given the chance to reach out to other business owners and vendors as part of their business implementation plan.

Graduates of the JA BSP Programs will also be given the chance to explore further opportunities beyond the sessions and training. They can also take part in regional competitions such as the JA Asia Pacific Company of the Year Competition. There are also lots of available internships, career insights, mentoring and micro-financing for those who would want to build and start their businesses upon finishing the program. Scholarships and financial aid are available to students who will decide to pursue further studies here and abroad. Partner schools will also benefit by training available, mini-MBA programs and certifications for the teachers and instructors. The JA BSP Program proves to be a holistic, all-encompassing program that benefits not only the students and its recipients but also the partner schools and more importantly, the country and the community.

For more information, you may reach out to Kissette Petiza at coordinator18@japionline.org or you may contact her directly at +(63) 967 805 2036.