By Elizabeth Lanier
Students of the Morgan County school system participated in a career fair last Wednesday. The career fair, which was held at Morgan County High School (MCHS), was a huge success, as there were 50 booths occupied by business in the community. Some of these businesses included: Classic Collision, Georgia Power, Farmview, Bulldog Steel, Kiddy Land, Morgan Memorial, Georgia Pacific, and many more. Merritt Ainslie, who coordinated this event for the first time this year, estimated that they had “between 1,100-1,300 students walk through the expo between 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.” The students at MCHS, of course, participated in this event. However, the entire fifth grade of Morgan County Elementary School (MCES) as well as the entire eight grade from Morgan County Middle School (MCMS) also added to that total.
Each student, whether in 12th or fifth grade, took away valuable information that the fair offered: “We wanted the students to get the opportunity and see all the different types of careers right here in Morgan County. I think it opened their eyes as to what is available. I’m not sure they realized the variety of careers and options available to them if they choose to take advantage of the opportunity. It is a wonderful opportunity for the students to make a good impression and brand themselves in front of employers and also a recruiting tool for employers to see their future labor force and maybe hand pick the ones that stood out for follow-up internships, interviews, and employment opportunities,” explained Ainslie.
Another point of view on the many opportunities this event posed came from Jordan Farrington, who works at the Madison Fire Department. “I started when I was in high school, and it was a great life choice for me,” said Farrington when asked why he thinks this career day is important. Miki Edwards, the principal at MCHS, saw this occasion as a way for students to demonstrate the lessons they’ve learned through the KA$H program (Knowledge, Attitude, Skills, and Habits) that was introduced this year: “In order for our students to be prepared to leave high school and pursue the college and career goals, it is important that they are able to meet and speak with members of the businesses here in their own community. These conversations are a great way for students to practice their networking skills. Also, we never know how an introduction or sharing career information may spark interest in a student and impact their future,” Edwards explained. She also went on to say thank you to all of the businesses that came out and provided the insight students needed to hear: “We are appreciative to all of the business and industry members who took valuable time from their workplaces to come and invest in our students. These types of activities pay off in ways that aren’t always immediately apparent but will make an impact on our community in a future workforce.” Whether a student chooses to pursue the medical route, teaching route, or anything in between, the career fair displayed the many possibilities here in Morgan County.