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Opportunities for the future

How do you keep young people from leaving Beaufort County after they graduate high school? How do you get them to come back when they finish college? A big part of answering those questions is making sure that young people realize what type of career opportunities are available right here close to home.

This week, local high school seniors will have the chance to look into the future and learn about those local careers, thanks to a partnership between Beaufort County Schools and the Washington-Beaufort County Chamber of Commerce. Together the two will host a “speed jobbing” event at Beaufort County Community College tomorrow.

With a similar format to the old speed-dating model, students will cycle through tables set up in the BCCC Multipurpose Room, spending five minutes at a time with professionals from a wide range of industries, from utilities and emergency services to construction and nursing.

It’s the second year the Chamber and the school system have joined forces to put on the event, and in doing so they are fulfilling a critical purpose. Not only are they showing students the career possibilities here at home, but they’re also connecting them with adults who are currently doing those jobs.

The professionals who fill these roles can tell students what kind of salaries to expect, what a typical day of work looks like and what kind of education and skills they need to be successful in a given career field.

“We need to show our future workforce what we have to offer in Beaufort County and what it takes to work at your business,” a letter from the Chamber to prospective participants stated. “This event is geared towards students who are not committed to a four-year school. These young adults are part of the future of this area. It is more important than ever to grow our own workforce in Beaufort County so that we, as a team, can offer qualified competent employees to help you be successful. By participating in an event like this, you are a part of the plan.”

From providing insight into fruitful careers for the next generation, to helping fill the needs of the local workforce, this type of event takes on a particular importance. To the kids going to this event Thursday, take a pen and paper to make notes. Be sure to ask questions. This is a great opportunity to find out what is available in our area.