Middle school students at St. Mary School in Delaware got some professional insight Wednesday during the first annual Career Day.
The event was put on by Life Scout and eighth-grader Patrick Means, who contacted the City of Delaware and local businesses and invited them to the career day for his Eagle Scout Project.
“I heard a lot of schools were having career days,” Means said, adding he thought he would use his Eagle Scout project to bring the project to St. Mary and give his classmates a chance to learn about different careers.
In total, 16 different professionals spoke to approximately 85 students Wednesday, including armed service members, firefighters, police officers and medical professionals.
Students were given forms to fill out at each of the stops, and they asked each speaker questions about the best and worst part of each career, how much education is required, and what skills they’ve learned.
St. Mary students said they enjoyed the career day and the chance to ask questions.
“I really am enjoying it,” said Cooper Heald, an eighth-grader. “We’re able to see what it’s like for a variety of different types of careers.”
Heald said he starts high school next year and is starting to think about what kind of job he wants in the future.
“It’s been really interesting,” he added.
Luke Gibbons, a sixth-grader, said the event gave him lots of perspective on careers.
“All of it was useful,” he said. “I enjoyed learning about (different careers.)”
Abby Cullen, an eighth-grader, said she enjoyed learning about the ROTC program, and it’s the path she’s planning to take in order to study medical psychology. Cullen said she’s planning on keeping her grades high throughout her schooling to make sure she’s on the right path “straight from the beginning.”
Cullen said apart from the ROTC information, she learned that all the careers at the fair have some things in common.
“I learned that discipline is needed in every job,” she said.
Cullen added that many of the careers had a social aspect as well. “In most jobs, you need to be comfortable around others. You can’t just stick to yourself.”
Jackie Walker, assistant city manager for Delaware, gave students a presentation about local government and how impactful it can be.
“(I wanted them to learn about why they should be) passionate about local government and how important it is,” Walker said. “It touches everyone’s lives.”
Walker said doing presentations like the one at career day isn’t part of her usual job, but she really enjoyed talking to the students and answering their questions.
After the event, Means said he thought it went well.
“I liked that people were more open than I thought,” Means said. “It was a major success. It turned out really great.”
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.