Every year I am asked, “Which is your favorite school to participate in a career day?” My answer is always, “All of them.” And I mean it. Really, I do. Having the privilege of speaking to your children about my vocation is a task I am honored to perform. Of course, my most recently attended school is no exception. Reynolds Middle School in Proper, Texas is my favorite.
Back in October 2018 the educational team at Reynolds asked us back as speakers for their school’s annual career day event. In addition to providing our classes with a description of our job and what our typical work day consisted of, they also requested what I think are supremely beneficial questions anyone about to enter the workforce should consider:
- What experience, training or degree is required for your job?
- What is the current and future outlook for jobs in your career field?
- What other careers are closely related to yours including those that do require and do not require higher education degrees?
- What is your favorite thing about your job?
- What do you like least about your job?
- Do any opportunities for advancement exist in your job?
- How do most people academically prepare for a job in your field?
- What types of things are middle school students learning now that they will need to expand their knowledge in, in the future for this type of job? Are certain academic skills necessary for this career?
- Are there certain character traits and work habits, when cultivated, can increase success in this profession?
To increase the authenticity of our students’ experience we were also requested to wear attire typical for a normal work day, if possible, and to the extent we felt comfortable, to share our personal journey story on how we arrived at our current point in life, what motivated us to achieve our goals and what we see for our own futures in our respective professions.
The morning of Friday, January 18, 2019, KatyDid and I were instantly greeted with genuine smiles of welcome and treated to a formal escort to our designated classroom where we readied to share our stories of success and heartbreak, because both are part of it, and to encourage the next generation of veterinary medical professionals in their own journey. We had five, thirty-minute interactive presentation sessions. Every group of students asked great questions, made terrific observations, listened attentively and loved hands-on time with demo-dog extraordinaire, KatyDid!
Heartfelt thank you’s to Ms. Melissa Covin, Seventh Grade Counselor, for the invite again this year and to the National Junior Honor Society students for your enthusiastic send off after this amazing event!!! (I have always been part of the “walls” of a celebration tunnel. Aside from answering thought-provoking questions from Eagles’ students, I think KatyDid’s and my favorite part of the day was getting to run through the tunnel and hi-fiving cheering NJHSers!)