Julien Padillo, Editor-in-Chief
Angelica Santiago, Staff Writer
At Perkiomen Valley High School, there are many fall traditions: from spirit week, to football rivalries, to memorable homecoming dances. Among those traditions is Career Fair, an event unique to our school in comparison to other districts in the area. High school is the point when a question often asked to students is, “Who will you be when you grow up?” To which, Career Fair aims to the answer that exact question— or at the very least lead students to the discovery of their passions.
The first career fair was first held around 2007. It was formed to acquaint students with future career and internship opportunities. From only a handful of participants to now more than fifty booths, the school has made the effort to ensure that students find at least one interesting line of work to find interest in. Mrs. Colucci, the current director of the Career Fair, further expands, “Career fair is most about gaining knowledge, exploring ideas, and formulating a mindset of what your future can look like.”
Intention and aim remains consistent: to lead students to their future paths.
The career fair is ever evolving. In the past recent years especially, student requests for more niche careers have arisen. Colucci expresses her recent addition of workshops for seniors and juniors: “This change was made because in feedback, seniors expressed their dislike for the repetitive nature of the career fair. So we made changes to allow freshman to work on naviance, sophomores to experience [the volunteer fair], [and] juniors explored the volunteer fair to emphasis their need to complete senior projects and had one workshop. Lastly, seniors completed the career fair and two workshops.”
The idea behind the implementation of workshops is to open the students up to topics that will hopefully prove beneficial for the future. Whether it is on a topic one picked on their own, or one a student was assigned to, the purpose serves to be informative to any student: those seeking college, those who are not, and those who have yet to decide. For that reason, subjects range from college transitions, to credit score, to stress. Colucci hopes that all workshops act as some use to the students who attend.
Regarding stress, Colucci comments, “Stress is very important. […] I’m surprised we don’t have 1800 anxious students, we put so much pressure on you! You’re like a little pressure cooker of all the things we expect from you: have a part time job, clubs, make sure you make your bed at home, do the laundry. It’s a lot of stuff for a highschool student. It isn’t easy.”
In the future, some prospective changes regard addressing career fields that do not necessarily fit into the ‘STEM’ focus, for there are many students that have interests that lie elsewhere.
“We have been requested careers from video game design to music production, we often try to mold the Career Fair to our student’s changing wants and desires,” states Colucci, “Every year we make a targeted effort. We do take those student forms that are handed in […], and I do take note of those careers that are not represented enough. In large measure, it was art careers, music careers, and law.” She continues on to discuss the difficulties that come with bringing in people that are involved in such areas, and how she is working to get the fair to be as inclusive as possible.
As the years pass, the Career Fair can fully develop into an event that effectively encompasses its intent and potential. Students continue to mold the careers, workshops, and topics needed to be discussed here at Perk Valley. This unique event provides students the ability to develop skills and network with people who may be in our future. Having the benefit of passionate faculty to encourage students to pursue not only jobs, but passions enables us to shape our generations and the ones to come.
photo source: Olivia Scott