The firefighter and police officer ran into the bustling cafeteria. Not far behind them, an astronaut walked in after the Navy serviceman, all ready to get a glimpse of what the future may hold.
John B. Dey Elementary School held its first-ever Career Night Thursday, with dozens of community volunteers sharing information about their chosen career path and answering questions from students about their experiences as well as doling out advice where needed.
From photographers and engineers to real estate agents and jewelry makers, attendees had close to 40 tables to visit. And, the students themselves were encouraged to dress up like a career, which led to a host of professions being represented by the children as well.
“It’s exciting to learn about the different things that we could do when we grow up,” said Dey Elementary student Matthew Todl. “It’s just fun.”
“We can already start planning for what we want to do so we are ready once we are actually at that age,” said fellow classmate Aiden Shope.
One of the most popular rooms of the evening was the veterinarian station, where children could come in and play with both a rabbit and dog while learning more about the foundations of animal science. Next door, students could boogie down in the dance instruction room before heading up the hall to the main exhibition room in the cafeteria.
“We had several students become very excited about being doctors, veterinarians, dancers, gardeners, and artists just from this event,” said Dey Elementary School Principal Beth Bianchi. “Even though children will say what they want to be when they grow up, authentic experiences where they are collaborating with professionals in those fields help them to see those dreams as possible realities.”
According to Bianchi, the event, which was hosted by the school’s Parent Teacher Association, perfectly aligned with the work the school division is doing in regards to academic and career planning.
“When we refer to the VBCPS Graduate Profile, we are preparing all of our students to be ‘Future Ready’,” Bianchi said. “In the school setting, we provide experiences that are rooted in developing those skills through inquiry, STEM activities, problem-based learning, and opportunities to communicate and collaborate. However, the true power and motivation comes from children seeing themselves in the career that they would like to pursue.”
For more information on Academic and Career Planning, visit vbschools.com.