Career Day first for county studentsPublished 7:08pm Monday, March 11, 2013
Over 500 high school juniors will descend on the Washington Civic Center today for Career Day and a chance to find out what Beaufort County jobs are out there waiting for new graduates.
The event — the first of its kind in the area — is a partnership between Beaufort County Schools and the Washington-Beaufort County Chamber of Commerce. Both public and private school students have been invited to attend.
“We really needed to make the connection between the businesses here and the students,” said Catherine Glover, executive director of the chamber of commerce. “The sophomores’ Job Shadow Day is limited to 50 students. We needed something to touch all students.”
Glover said representatives from 38 local businesses will be on hand to tell students about what they do and what jobs might await them after graduation. Each participating business falls into North Carolina Career and Technical Education career clusters, the pathways set by the state that help students choose and meet academic and career goals. A sample among the many career clusters and businesses are: for Health Sciences, Vidant-Beaufort Hospital and Vidant-Pungo Hospital; representing Finance are First South Bank, First Citizens Bank and Wilson, Jones and Company; and Law, Public Safety, Corrections and Security will be covered by the Washington Police and Fire-Rescue-EMS, North Carolina State Highway Patrol and the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office.
“Students make the choice as to which businesses they want to learn more about — the credentials they’ll need, how much money they’ll make,” Glover said.
Glover said before arriving, most of the students won’t know what these businesses do, but this is the chance for them to “get up close and personal” and find out the clear path to getting hired. While the focus of the event may be on careers, Glover said the kids will be practicing the soft skills of the businesses world too: hand shakes, good eye contact and proper grammar.
Glover said it’s a plus that the county’s three largest employers — PotashCorp-Aurora, Beaufort County Schools and Vidant — will be present for Career Day. In addition to a sponsorship from Job Link and money raised last year by the chamber’s adult spelling bee to fund Career Day, Glover said a team of over 100 volunteers will be steering the event.
“It’s going to be a little chaotic — it’s the first one — but it’s a great opportunity for (the students),” Glover said.