Jarvis Career Day gives students a glimpse at life’s possibilities

Kneeling police officer in green uniform poses with three boys

Jarvis Middle School students learned about career opportunities from more than 40 local professionals during the Journeys Beyond Jarvis Career Exploration Day on Friday, Sept. 29 at Jarvis. The professionals spoke candidly about their jobs and answered questions about their personal career paths.

Jarvis guidance counselor Shannon Buttacaroli worked with the Herkimer BOCES’ School to Careers (STC) program to organize the day. Jarvis partnered with STC last year for the first time. The students liked it so well, everyone agreed to do it again.

“Once again, this was a great success,” Mrs. Buttacaroli said.

Students attended five 20-minute sessions based on STC career interest surveys they took prior to the event. In addition to the five sessions with local professionals, students participated in welcoming assemblies and a reflection period at the end of the day in their advisory classrooms.

Each session reflected one of 16 nationally recognized career clusters—groupings of occupations and broad industries based shared features. These include:

  • Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources
  • Architecture & Construction
  • Arts, A/V Technology & Communications
  • Business Management & Administration
  • Education & Training
  • Finance
  • Government & Public Administration
  • Health Science
  • Hospitality & Tourism
  • Human Services
  • Information Technology
  • Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security
  • Manufacturing
  • Marketing
  • Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics
  • Transportation, Distribution & Logistics

Depending on the sessions they chose, students heard from a New York State Trooper, Department of Environmental Conservation forest ranger, village administrator, farmer, technology company recruiter, brewing company manager, and many others.

young woman seated holds a puppy while talking to two students

Never too early to start looking ahead

When people have a goal, they make choices that take them toward that goal. That is especially true for students. The courses they choose, attendance, school behavior, and the effort they invest can open or close doors in their futures.

The problem is that students, especially middle school and younger, have a hard time connecting what they do today in school to their futures. (Think of the adults who look back on their school years and say, “I wish I had known!”)

Career Day helps students see that even what they do in middle school can affect college and career options. This is especially important now that New York state is broadening its Pathways to Graduation. No longer must every student take the same core classes to earn a high school diploma. Students can pursue a track that prepares them for entry-level employment (SDOS), technical careers (CTE), ongoing education (Regents and Advanced Regents), or the Arts. Language other than English (LOTE) will soon become another option. Career Day gives students more information to decide which path is best for them.

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For another perspective, check out Herkimer BOCES’s article