Hudson -- Most people know Betty Banks-Burke as the business teacher and club advisor at Hudson High School.

On April 11 Banks-Burke, who has been teaching for more than 40 years, was given another title. The teacher, who has led a variety of teams to participate in business competitions, often placing at or near the top, was named as the 2013-14 high school teacher inductee into the Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio Hall of Fame.

"I've read through the letter numerous times from Junior Achievement selecting me as the Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio High School Teacher Hall of Fame honoree for 2014, and I am in awe," Banks-Burke said.

The inductee was a member of the organization when she was in school.

"I remember constructing, marketing and selling products within the community," Banks-Burke said of her Junior Achievement participation.

As a member and now a teacher, Banks-Burke said teaching methodology has remained the same.

"As a business teacher, we are constantly exploring new ways to emulate the real world while our students are still in high school," Banks-Burke said.

Working closely with Junior Achievement has provided the flexibility needed to open up economic, personal finance and entrepreneurship experiences students need in order to excel, Banks-Burke added.

Banks-Burke was given the honor for demonstrating a strong involvement with Junior Achievement and going "above and beyond the implementation of JA's critical economic education programs in their classroom, utilizing JA programs and resources to create opportunities for students to apply their newly gained knowledge and skills to the real world," according to Stacey Nolt, development specialist for Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio.

"Each year, Betty Banks-Burke coordinates an after school business club that utilizes the JA Titan program to introduce students to critical economics and management decisions through an interactive simulation," Nolt added. "In addition, Betty integrates the JA Finance Park Virtual program into the curriculum of her Business Essentials classes, providing students with an immersive simulation that covers a variety of financial literacy topics including: personal finance, budgeting, money management, saving, spending and financial institutions."

Banks-Burke's students also take part in a variety of other business programs, including entrepreneurial and personal finances.

Denice Schafer is senior district manager at Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio and works closely with Banks-Burke on a variety of programs. Schafer called Banks-Burke "a great spokeswoman for Junior Achievement."

"She's continually sharing information about JA programs with other teachers and taking the extra step to ensure her students have the tools needed to succeed," Schafer said. "This past fall, Betty served on the planning committee for the Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education's annual conference and invited JA to share our mission with the event's attendees."

Each year, one teacher from the high, middle and elementary school levels are chosen for induction into the hall of fame, according to Nolt.

Hudson High School Principal Brian Wilch said Banks-Burke "brings energy, passion and enthusiasm to everything she does here at Hudson High School."

"She is dynamic in the classroom; her influence on members of the HHS Business Club speaks volumes -- what a professional and accomplished group," Wilch added. "I appreciate the way she's able to expose our students to business-type opportunities in the community and beyond."

Wilch called the recent Junior Achievement Titan Challenge, where teams finished first, second and third in various rounds, an example of the opportunity for students to showcase their talents while competing against other high schools.

"Betty holds our students accountable to take charge, look and act professional, and to be passionate about their pursuits and they deliver," Wilch added.

Banks-Burke will be honored at a Junior Achievement banquet in May.

"When you work with the caliber of students that I am blessed to work with, as a teacher, you strive to give them the world--the business world," she added. " We have so much support in our community because we are all after the same goal--what is best for the students."


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