Thomas Jefferson

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A Fair For The Future

Posted 05/20/2024 by Carlie Quinney

The Career Fair took place in the gym on April 11th and drew many students interested in exploring future career options. photo by Brady Vinlove

The Career Fair was a successful event that brought students one step closer to their desired future. 

This year, on the 11th of April, Thomas Jefferson High School held its very first Skilled Trades Career Fair. This event provided a great opportunity for students to learn about opportunities and chances for them to participate in their futures. This included, of course, job opportunities, but also programs and internships for getting involved in valuable industries. Even as a first time event, the Career Fair, organized by Emily Bobrick and Brittany Cook, was a major success. The two professionals did an outstanding job putting the event together, as they were able to bring a vast group of visitors and participants from all kinds of backgrounds. This aspect of the Career Fair showcased opportunities that don’t necessarily require a four year degree. Not only that, but students could also find options related to their desired future. From tattoo artists to veterinarians, the Career Fair had the goal of inspiring TJ students to start their path to success, and it nailed that mission dutifully. 

Bobrick works at TJ as the Career Navigator. She is here to help students step onto the right path for their future, by providing opportunities such as career explorations, internships, and apprenticeships. She works with the DPS Launch Internship Program and the CareerWise Youth Apprenticeship Program, allowing her to efficiently provide resources for many fields like arts, technology, and healthcare. With the Career Fair, Bobrick’s goal was to provide exposure to different industries and organizations, but also to connect students with training programs. Cook works with the Maxx Impact Group, which is a consulting firm that highlights workforce development. Along with Bobrick, Cook worked to organize the career fair, and she was able to connect TJ to a diverse group of companies. The Career Fair offered programs for health care, computer science, hospitality, construction, and so much more. “This year, it was a multi-industry Career Fair that provided alternate pathways to college. For students that don’t want to go to college right away or who would start working while taking college classes, those would be the opportunities that were there,” Cook explained. The Career Fair was designed to appeal to a targeted audience (seniors), hoping that this would assure them that they are able to consider career paths that may not require a four year degree. The industries that visited TJ for the fair were based on skilled trades, so this was helpful to seniors who have specific knowledge and interests. 

Although the Career Fair was mainly organized to introduce beneficial options for seniors, it also held some fantastic opportunities for underclassmen. Some of the companies at the fair were gathering students’ information to help get them started working in the summer. For instance, students of all grades were interested in working at Beau Jo’s Pizza, a business that came looking for summer employees. The event was successful not only in terms of setting up graduating students for the future, but also in just getting students involved in the workforce for the summer. The Career Fair wields significant potential in helping the TJ community with developing skills such as social communication, creativity, time management, and critical thinking. 

Bobrick offers so many more opportunities outside of the Career Fair: the “TJ Career Hub” course in Schoology is available to anyone in the TJ community, and Bobrick frequently updates the page with possible internships, apprenticeships, and paid jobs. “There are so many options,” Bobrick explained. “I put a slidedeck in the Schoology course that shows all of the opportunities. In addition to the Career Fair, right now there’s a bunch of paid internships for the summer, there’s paid work based learning options for students to go to school part-time and work part-time, which is through the Career Wise Youth Apprenticeship Program; there are summer camps and all kinds of learning opportunities for students with different interests,” she said. There are endless possibilities for the future, and the resources provided by Bobrick can set anyone and everyone on the right path toward their goals. It’s important to take advantage of this personalized and specific assistance that TJ has available in the building. 

The partnership between Bobrick and Cook served to execute the Career Fair excellently. With confidence running high, the two agree that the fair will most definitely make an appearance again next year. With this in mind, they are looking forward to improving any components so that next year’s Career Fair may boast even more successful results.

If you visited the Career Fair or plan to visit next year, fill out this survey for additional requests and feedback. There will be a drawing for an Amazon gift card for those who complete it by May 23rd.