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Junior Achievement, MasterCard Announce Expanded Partnership; Innovation Hub Officially Opens

Junior Achievement Press Release,April 14, 2011

Wilmington, Del. — MasterCard Worldwide executives joined Junior Achievement of Delaware (JA) board members, staff and supporters today at the announcement of the global payment network’s expanded support for the Wilmington-based nonprofit. Junior Achievement followed the announcement with the official ribbon cutting for the Innovation Hub, its one-of-a-kind career exploration zone that will help students throughout the region learn about and pursue careers that will positively change their world.

MasterCard Worldwide Executive Vice President Ed Brandt joined JA Delaware Board Chair Don Fulton, JA Delaware President Rob Eppes and Deputy Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office Bernice Whaley at the podium before the unveiling of the new MasterCard Center, a state-of-the-art area within the Finance Park section of JA World, the nonprofit’s interactive education center. Through the MasterCard Center, Brandt said, “Students will gain real-world experience that will help demystify complex financial concepts and lay the foundation to help make responsible financial decisions.”

Brandt then presented Eppes and his staff with a giant MasterCard debit card that represented the international corporation’s gift of $150,000 to JA over three years. Middle and high school students will also use faux debit cards supplied by MasterCard in simulated purchases within Finance Park.

Eppes then directed the attention of the more than 100 guests at the event to the entrance of the Innovation Hub (iHUB), where Delaware Deputy Secretary of Education Dan Cruce praised JA and sponsoring companies Astra Zeneca, Accenture, Dow, DuPont and MasterCard for helping to create what he said students in the iHUB pilot described as “cool,” “high-tech,” “enlightening” and “motivating.”

The iHUB focuses on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) studies and careers to which those studies can lead. The iHUB experience ties directly to the Delaware Department of Education mandated Career Cruising portal, through which students create an individualized Student Success Plan.

“After each visit to the iHUB, students leave with a greater awareness of the careers that match their interests and how those careers can address what we call ‘Global Hot Topics,’” Eppes explained. “Through iHUB’s touch screen technology, students create a roadmap to careers that match their interests and begin to explore what those careers require and include as well as local companies that feature positions in those careers. Teachers can then download that information to be directly incorporated into each student’s Career Cruising Student Success Plan.”

About Junior Achievement of Delaware:

Junior Achievement of Delaware (JA) provides students with a unique foundation of business and economic education and is a partner of choice for businesses, educators and policy makers seeking to expand workforce and economic development. JA currently serves counties throughout Delaware, Maryland and New Jersey. For more information, visit our website at www.jadelaware.org.

About MasterCard Worldwide:

As a leading global payments company, MasterCard Worldwide prides itself on being at the heart of commerce, helping to make life easier and more efficient for everyone, everywhere. MasterCard serves as a franchisor, processor and advisor to the payments industry, and makes commerce happen by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, governments, businesses, merchants and cardholders worldwide. In 2010, $2.7 trillion in gross dollar volume was generated on its products by consumers around the world. Powered by the MasterCard Worldwide Network – the fastest payment processing network in the world – MasterCard processes over 23 billion transactions each year and has the capacity to handle 160 million transactions per hour, with an average network response time of 130 milliseconds and with 99.99 percent reliability. MasterCard advances global commerce through its family of brands, including MasterCard®, Maestro® and Cirrus®; its suite of core products such as credit, debit and prepaid; and its innovative platforms and functionalities, such as MasterCard PayPass™ and MasterCard inControl®. MasterCard serves consumers, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more information, please visit us at www.mastercard.com. Follow us on Twitter: @mastercardnews.