SARAH HAAS, email@example.com
North County High School is getting ready for the academic year by inviting students, parents and guardians to find out what options await graduates after high school.
The Post-Secondary Expo is slated for Wednesday from 5-7 p.m. in the high school’s Commons Area and gym. The new school year starts Monday.
Lori Kohm, high school counselor, said she and fellow faculty members and administrators think the expo should be a good way of connecting stakeholders with local businesses, resources and potential employers.
“We have colleges coming, and companies can set up a table space, because maybe they hire high school-age students, so it’d be a good opportunity to just get their name and brand out there to our students,” Kohm said. “If they only hire 18-year-olds, we’ve got parents that are coming with their kids who might be looking for a career change. This gives parents a real opportunity to check out new jobs, too.”
Kohm said, while the Internet, employment apps and social media can do a lot to inform high school students about what awaits them, college- and career-wise, it’s still good to get an old-fashioned, real-life look at a company, school or organization represented at the expo.
“And even for myself as a school counselor, I can go in network with these people and say, ‘Look, let me be your pipeline. If you know that you’re in need for 18-year-old employees, contact me and I will put things out there to help connect some of our students with you,’” she said.
Kohm said the school also has let students engage in a work program as part of their education.
“Last year, we hooked up a student with a workplace, and she was able to come to school part-time and then the other part of the day she went to work. It was something that was key for her, because of her family background and different things. She needed that opportunity,” Kohm said. “She’s just a beautiful kid and every time I’d see her I’d say, ‘How’s it going’ and she’s like, ‘Oh, I am just loving it.’”
Kohm said it was a great example of a student having almost all their credits needed to graduate but greatly benefitting by gaining workplace exposure and experience. She indicated the high school’s industrial committee may be able to offer more and similar opportunities in the future.