Career Exploration: A student perspective

Wow! It's almost 2014, which means the current high school seniors will be graduating soon and all freshmen students will be a quarter through their high school journey! That being said, on October 30th, 2013, all freshman students (that being 5000+ freshmen) in the district attended the 5th Annual  Shoney's My Future. My Way. Career Exploration Fair! At this fair, students were able to meet with business representatives in a variety of career fields such as the Police Force, Emergency Medical Technicians, Dentistry, Pharmacology, Nursing, Hospitality, Hotel Management, Tourism, Applied Technology, Nashville Zoo, Adventure Science Center and several more! Students were given a booklet in their freshman seminar class in which they had to record information learned in their interviews that they had with the business professionals.

During the career fair, Hunters Lane Academy Student Ambassadors, Kendra and myself , were able to give a tour to a group of international Vanderbilt Representatives in the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program, Mayor Karl Dean, and CEO of Shoney's, David Davoudpour! We were able to give insight into how our academy system works here in Nashville and how the career fair is very useful for freshman considering their pathways in high school. Pathways give students the chance to take courses pertaining to the specific career field they would like to join.

The career fair gave students the opportunity to learn in-depth about a variety of career fields while also getting to complete hands-on activities while they were there. Students were able to ask questions and learn about things they can do to prepare for the career field of their choice. The S.W.A.T. team, Forensics Lab, Sheriffs Department, and Metro Police brought along their high-tech vehicles for students to interact inside of! How cool is it that students got the chance to not only learn about these vehicles and when/where they are used, but actually getting the opportunity to explore the inside of them!?

Besides the police field, Belmont University had an on-site DNA extraction lab for students to try. Did you know that when you extract DNA from a fruit, like a strawberry, it looks like white filmy substance in the bottom of the test tube? LEE Company held cup competitions and gave away fun prizes. Nashville Sounds had a baseball helmet  inflatable for students to aim for the glove with the baseballs for a prize! Students interested in pre-health fields were able to see a life-like training mannequins on a gurney and learn about the nursing and EMT careers. Also, for students interested in the aquatic studies, the Aquarium and the Nashville Zoo brought along a couple of their reptile friends- both living and preserved. To freshmen students, if you’re interested, the Nashville Zoo has several internship opportunities for you to join.

Shoney’s also made delicious smoothies and light refreshments for students to taste. Several representatives who work in the Shoney’s business were also available to discuss their job roles in-depth in student-friendly booths.

I hope that all freshmen in the district gained insight into the career that they would love to join in the future. Before they know it, college will be right around the corner. Good luck with all of your future endeavors Class of 2018!


-Mika Carr Hunters Lane High School Academy of International Baccalaureate Academies of Nashville Marketing Intern