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B.T. Bullock students learn about careers

SANFORD — It’s never too early to start planning for the future, and B.T. Bullock Elementary whole-heartedly agrees. 

Third-, fourth- and fifth-graders got a peak into some real-world jobs at Career Day. Representatives from several companies and organizations — ranging from orthodontics, journalism, law enforcement and everything in-between — volunteered their time to teach students about different occupations.

Principal Stefanie Clarke said Career Day offered students the opportunity to think about their futures.

We know that we are preparing our students for their bright futures as leaders,” she said. “Career Day is an engaging and interactive way to expose our students to a variety of careers to pique their interest.” 

Clarke said Bullock’s Guidance Counselor Megan O'Shaughnessy thoughtfully selected guests — from a wide variety of careers — to educate students on occupations and stimulate interaction with community members.

Dave Ragan, volunteer at Habitat for Humanity and retired dentist, brought various tools to construct houses with for the students to try out.

“The kids like that it’s interactive,” he said. “Some ask questions and some just want to play. Even if they don’t do construction, maybe they’ll be DIY people.”

Ragan also noted how job exposure, even at such a young age, is beneficial. 

“I think it’s good for them to be able to interact with people here,” he said. “Then they can get an idea of what subjects they like so they can take the classes needed for it,” he said.

Sanford Herald Journalist Zach Horner thought Career Day was a great way to broaden the students’ horizons.

“With the younger kids, their bubbles aren’t as big, so it’s good to show them variety,” he said. “I would’ve benefitted from just being exposed to the different opportunities.”

Horner is hoping the students will look into journalism as a career.

“I hope they’re all journalists in the future,” he said. “They’re learning a lot of things right now that can be applied to journalism: writing, reading, reading comprehension, even history. I hope they all want to work at the Herald one day.” 

While Ameriah Jones and Mackenzie Bowles, both third-graders, didn’t have journalism at the top of their career lists, they were inspired by a couple of the booths and volunteers participating in Career Day.

“I thought it was cool to learn about the [WWGP and WFJA] radio stations,” Jones said. “I want to sing and dance when I grow up, maybe I can sing on the radio.”

Bowles liked Pfizer’s purification table the best.

“We learned about vaccines,” she said. “I want to be a nurse or a doctor someday and help make people feel better.”

And if students are exposed to the real world sooner, they’ll have a better idea of how to navigate their futures. Clarke felt this notion gives students an advantage.

When our students realize that their unique talents, skills and interests can be used in a specific career, it allows them to dream big and start to create a plan for their future,” she said.