Biztown’s Bizzy Bees


Michael Thomas

Picture of the gateway to Biztown

Once a year WMS students are no longer Woodbridge Warriors, but “Biztown’s Bizzy Bees”.

If you are not aware, one of the electives available for Woodbridge Middle School seventh grade students is J.A. Biztown. Biztown deals with and goes into detail with economics, business, and money. The program is run by the man, the myth, the legend, Mr. Keuscher.

Keuscher said, “I found out that another elementary school in the district was doing it for third graders.” The principal of that elementary school is a friend of Mr. Keuscher, and after finding that out from said principal, Mr. Keuscher thought it would be an “awesome” elective to bring to Woodbridge Middle School for their students. Mr. Keuscher proudly said this is the fifth year straight that Biztown has been an elective in Woodbridge Middle School for its students.

Every year, Biztown students take a field trip to the J.A. Biztown site in Edison, a place where all the students’ knowledge of economics, business, and money come to a head. Everyone is assigned a role, group, or business.

The business and groups this year included a UPS Store, Wells Fargo, BizBee News (an in house news paper), City Hall, Investors Bank, Quest Diagnostics, an in house radio station that plays songs and advertisements, and Chick-Fil-A. The tiny space turns into a bustling, thriving, little town for a few hours at a time. It’s run almost non-stop every day, according to one of the advisors in the building.

Within minutes of arriving, the jobs of different groups is to act and work like a real functioning business that buys, sells, and makes profits. Some businesses will rise up through the fire and flames, some will come crashing down to the cold, hard, ground.

Many Woodbridge Middle School students and teachers want to attend this trip with a fiery, burning passion, but only Biztown students, teachers, and assistants are allowed, until now. The Warrior Messenger obtained unpresented access to the Biztown trip like no one that isn’t involved in Biztown has ever had before.

The first business is the UPS Store. The role of the UPS Store is to ship packages, checks, mail, and whatever else has to be shipped to other businesses and groups throughout Biztown.

Wells Fargo and Investors Bank are both respectively different banks. They give groups and business money out of their accounts so that groups and businesses can spend it. You can also start out saving accounts for practice for later on in life.

Quest Diagnostic is a store which sells a multitude of consumer goods and all sorts of knick-knacks. From sunglasses, stress balls, and much more. Basically a general store.

The Biz-Radio was very influential, as they controlled who heard about who. For a small fee, you could shout out your business or company. When there weren’t ads, they played a variety of music ranging from 80’s rock to today’s top hits.

City Hall was the place were problems were solved. Need something changed? Ask them to pass law. If you have a dispute between your company and another company or business, bring it to town hall.  

BizBee News was the in house newspaper that published articles of the going on’s of Biztown. They also published advertisements for companies and businesses.

Chick-Fil-A was the hottest spot out of all the companies and business in Biztown, mainly because of the food they served. The food they served were Chick-Fil-A branded chips. They also sell water for your daily recommended H20 needs.

Coming from a Biztown employee, they put Biztown as a “simulation”. Stating “JA Biztown, it’s like a simulation. We’re simulating an economy;, the students are trying to work in a business, while being a citizen of the town.”

That same employee believes that JA Biztown helps kids get a head start in life, “Kids that are a part of this program understand the different jobs in business; they understand how to write a check, they understand more financial literacy terms so that when they become an adult, they’ll already be one step ahead of the game”.

Before Biztown opened for businesses, many students such as Andrew Encarnación were worried about what was about to happen, but overall he was “confident” in his company and in his own skills.

After preparation from every company or business before Biztown was open for business, there was a calm. Then, Biztown madness.

Eventually, it was over and the kids all sat down to get a pat on the back and a bag of potato chips. This left the kids all looking like they spent all night doing work, leaving them with tired eyes.

Biztown was a wonderful experience for all the kids and the helpers who attended. It would be a good idea for Woodbridge to look out for the budding entrepreneurs when they graduate!