PROUD SPONSORS OF THE 18 UNDER 18 JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS

Meet the 2019 Junior Achievement 18 Under 18

They’re entrepreneurs and student leaders. They run charities and businesses. They are innovators. They don’t take no for an answer. They’re not waiting for adults to fix problems. 

The 2019 Junior Achievement 18 Under 18 showcases the independent and entrepreneurial spirit of Arizona’s youth. These 18 teenagers from across the state, at schools large and small, are united in their belief that change isn’t an adult concept. Change isn’t something that can wait for “one day.” 

Children of the digital age, these students have grown up with devices in their hands. They’ve always known the power of information at their fingertips. They know how to network, organize and develop. They aren’t afraid of sharing their opinions or making their mark on the world. 

Check them out and see the impact they’ve already made on their communities, and Arizona.

Entrepreneurial Spirit  |  Leadership  |  Making the Community Better | Extraordinary Skillset

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Caillou Pena
Senior Skyline High School, Apache Junction

Arizona Terrariums sells terrariums online and at local arts fairs, all handcrafted by Skyline High School Senior Caillou Pena. The business began with a simple $40 investment and has grown to earning more than $10,000 annually...

Fatima Bitheri 
Junior Girls Leadership Academy of Arizona, Phoenix

The daughter of African immigrants, Fatima Bitheri has made girls’ education and empowerment her life’s passion...

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Priscila Romero Guevara 
Senior Westwood High School, Mesa

When the topic is our nation’s southern border and immigration, it seems no one is without an opinion. For Priscila Romero Guevara, it’s a subject that hits very close to home, which is why she wants to devote her life to education and aid...

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Marcus Chavez
Junior Flowing Wells High School, Tucson

Marcus Chavez is most certainly a student on the move. From working in internships to participating in the national March for Our Lives, coaching to running on a trail, Chavez isn’t someone who likes being idle...

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Emma Suttell   Junior Boulder Creek High School, Anthem

A junior at Boulder Creek High School, Emma Suttell is the president of the Anthem chapter of the Veterans Heritage Project, a nationwide effort to connect students with veterans. Through her efforts, she’s published and preserved the stories of dozens of Arizona veterans...

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Nadira Mitchell
Senior Tucson High Magnet School, Tucson

Nadira Mitchell sees herself as following in a natural path – being raised in the Navajo tradition to respect nature – but also as a leader as a Native American woman pursuing a career in STEM disciplines...

ARIZONA'S 18 UNDER 18 AWARDS PROGRAM IS PRESENTED BY JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT OF ARIZONA AND REPUBLIC MEDIA 

Junior Achievement of Arizona is preparing today's students to succeed in work and life by equipping them with critical skills to manage their money, be ready to enter the workplace and to think like entrepreneurs. Reaching 80,000+ primarily low-income students each year, Junior Achievement is giving these students the tools and confidence to break poverty cycles and achieve new heights.

Republic Media is Arizona’s largest media company and part of The USA TODAY NETWORK. Home to azcentral and The Arizona Republic, the company helps the community connect, understand, act and thrive by keeping people informed and giving back. From raising funds that help at-risk children and families, to sponsoring local events and so much more, Republic Media identifies problems, supports solutions and fulfills its mission to enlighten, education and empower.

Ariana Sokoliv

Arielle Kutz

Bennett Katz

Elliot Hull

Evan Grace

Jack Pletka

Jackson Sriro

Joyisa Alvarez

Kamley Braun

Kate Maniuszko

Kiersten Rule

Leila Khan

Lucas Tapia 

Lynnea Motcomery

Madison Meyers

Mawadda Abuhamda

Shea Sciarappo

Zuri Muhammad

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE SEMI-FINALISTS

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Grace Dietz        
Junior Arizona School for the Arts, Phoenix

Obstacles don’t seem to intimidate Grace Dietz. A junior at Arizona School for the Arts, Dietz proves that anything is possible if a little passion is involved...

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James Lacno     
Junior Barry Goldwater High School, Phoenix

Most International Baccalaureate students find it difficult to pursue extra hobbies or interests. But for James Lacno, he’s finding that there’s much more to learn than what is in a textbook. Recipes are important, too...

Jordan Young
Senior Central High School, Phoenix

A senior at Central High School, Jordan Young has expanded her reach past what’s expected of a teenager. She’s a full-fledged, voting (and the only youth) board member of Mountain Park Health Center, a nonprofit health organization that provides healthcare to people regardless of their financial status...

Anissa Ferris
Junior BASIS Mesa, Mesa

Anissa Ferris is 17 years old, and is already a published author and the developer of a smartphone app. And she’s just getting started...

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Dylan Baca
Sophomore Blue Ridge High School, Pinetop

Dylan Baca needn’t watch a cartoon to find out how a bill becomes a law – he’s living it. A member of the Governor’s Youth Commission, Dylan is getting a firsthand view into politics, policy and public service...

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Catherine Broski
Junior Millennium High School, Litchfield Park

After Valentine’s Day, 2018, Catherine Broski watched in horror as another school shooting, this time at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, claimed the lives of 17 people. She knew she had to do something...

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Jackson Bukata 
Senior BASIS Scottsdale, Scottsdale

Most definitely a child of the digital age, Jackson Bukata is fascinated by the role algorithms could play in diagnosing and treating disease. A senior at BASIS Scottsdale, he’s already worked with Mayo Clinic researchers on colon cancer research...

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Elisa McRae
Senior Cienega High School, Vail

Elisa McRae knew an internship with the National Institutes of Health would be a challenge to get. Only 400 students – high school and college students – would be accepted from more than 7,000 applicants. But McRae didn’t let the odds get in her way...

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Alexis Hatch
Junior Sunnyslope High School, Phoenix

If there’s an argument to be made, Alexis Hatch is ready to defend it. An accomplished debater, Hatch has taken her passion for debate so far, it’s infectious...

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Addie Daniels
Senior Chino Valley High School, Chino Valley

A senior at Chino Valley High School, Addie Daniels is not just an athlete or a member of the choir. She’s taken her passion for volunteering and gone into overdrive, creating a food donation and distribution network for her community...

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Colton Cagle
Senior Westwood High School, Mesa

Colton Cagle has found the value in volunteering. A senior at Westwood High School, Colton’s extracurricular work with the Rotary Club has proven to be among the most impactful on his young life...

Dash McDonald
Senior Arcadia High School, Phoenix

While anyone with a smartphone can feel like a professional photographer or videographer, Dash McDonald has actually become one. A senior at Arcadia High School, McDonald has channeled his passion for dance, music and photography into a thriving business...

Karen Fletcher  |  Katherine Cecala | Karen Quick 

Karen Fletcher  |  Katherine Cecala | Karen Quick