Students at Springs Charter Cherry Valley Homeschool Cooperative in Beaumont had opportunities to talk with a respiratory therapist, real estate broker, intensive care unit nurse and a K-9 trainer during the school’s Career Fair held March 14.
Administrator Tammy Slaten said that 160 students, from kindergarten through 12th grade, walked around the multi-purpose room, with questions in hand for the career professionals.
There were approximately 16 “vendors,’’ or career professionals, represented at the career fair.
Three time slots gave a different group of students a half-hour to learn about the various professions.
Stacy Martinez, a volunteer mom, was helping the school during the career fair.
Her son Keaton, 6, and daughter Cadence, 9, attend Springs Charter Academy.
Martinez said that she and her husband, Anthony, have talked with their children about careers since they were little. Keaton wants to be an astronaut.
“He’s had an interest in space since he was little,” Martinez said.
Cadence wants to be a counselor, maybe at an elementary school.
Colin Russell, co-owner of Rebel K9 Services, brought his dog, Vilin, a 2 year-old Belgian Malinois, to demonstrate the work his company does in training dogs.
Vilin has another three months of training. “He’s going to be a narcotics detection dog,” Russell said.
It takes about a year to train the dogs, Russell said.
Vilin was very friendly with the children and let them pet him.
Jordan McCarthy, 15, a freshman, is still deciding about his future career.
He said he is interested in the medical field and possibly being a paramedic.
Jordan also has an interest in the military and may go to college, too. But right now, the medical field may be winning his vote.
“I’m interested in people’s health, helping people,” he said.
Daniel Cash Jr., co-owner of Signature Print, which creates screen printing and embroidery on shirts, demonstrated how his trade works on a white T-shirt with Springs Charter’s name in red.
Although he has been doing this work for more than three years, he opened his own business in October.
It takes a little over a minute to create the signature shirts.
Cash creates the screen with stencil and a color — in this case, red - and then rolls the screen down in the paint.
A blank shirt is placed on the glass and the screen’s image is transferred onto the shirt.
“I learned on the job,” he said.
Sergio Agudelo, a senior loan consultant for 18 years, works at Plaza Residential Mortgage, with offices in Riverside and Redlands.
When he first began working in the business, he handled second mortgages and now concentrates on first mortgages.
He helps clients find their dream home. Agudelo said they can be pre-approved for a home, then go out and look for the one they want.
The process is different for every client. “ It just really depends on the consumer when they find the home that they want,” Agudelo said.
Escrow usually takes 30 days, followed by an underwriter and then approving the order.
The students were taking their time talking to the owners and employees.
Ava Ingram, 10, a fifth-grader, said she is looking at a career as an artist. She loves drawing and the creativity of expressing herself.
“Sometimes I like to follow instructions,” Ava said.
She also might look into language arts and go to college. But she does not want to be too far away from her parents and four siblings, who live in Beaumont.
Skelly Cooley, 10, a fifth-grader, wants to be a writer, following in horror writer Stephen King’s footsteps.
“I feel like me, and I feel like I belong,” Skelly said.
Skelly wrote a play in third grade and a story in fourth grade.
She also is interested in acting, with some of her favorite actors being Emma Watson, Kevin Hart and Adam Sandler.
Ken Petronis, who teaches fifth and sixth grade, said his students divided into six groups to come up with questions. When they returned to the classroom, they discussed the answers from the career professionals and told their teachers what they learned from talking with them.
Although I was not officially a vendor at the event, at least a half-dozen students came up to the table I was sitting at and asked me questions about my job as a reporter.
It is a little unusual to be asked questions when I spend my time interviewing others. Their questions were fun. Here are my answers.
“Why did you choose this job?” I like to meet people and talk with them and write about their lives.
“Do you have to work nights?” Yes, when I cover city council and school board meetings.
“Do you have to have confidence to do your job” Yes, to be able to go up to people and ask them for an interview.
“How long have you been doing this?” At the Record Gazette, almost eight years. Overall, 35 years at three newspapers. (the student said, “Wow. That’s a long time.”)
Yes, it is, but it has been a very rewarding career.
Staff Writer Julie Farren may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org .