BY CAROL ROEHM
Students at Kenneth D. Bailey Academy will get a taste this week of what it’s like in the real world of work.
The academy has planned its first career day for Thursday. Representatives from 11 different companies and fields of interest in Danville and the surrounding areas will talk to students about what it is they do for a living and what job opportunities are available.
Principal Tracy Cherry originally came up with the idea to organize a career day.
“We want to expose them to some of the local businesses and career people to show them what successful people do in Danville and to spark an interest in them,” Cherry said of the students.
The students were surveyed and offered suggestions on the types of businesses they wanted to know more about, according to academy teacher Melinda Miethe.
“We got our students’ input and asked them what they would be interested in,” Miethe said.
“We ended up with a list of 11 businesses, and the students picked the top five they were interested in and wanted to attend workshops for,” she said.
On Thursday morning, each student will start the day with breakfast and then receive a folder where he or she can keep materials from the workshops.
During each 40-minute workshop, business professionals will make presentations covering everything from what to expect in a particular field and the education needed for a job to various other topics related to their company or field of interest.
“They will present information to the students, and some will use the multimedia in the classroom, such as overhead projectors and Smart Boards,” Miethe said.
One of the more unique workshops will be offered by Concept College of Cosmetology.
“They will explain what it takes to enroll in cosmetology school and then demonstrate haircuts,” Miethe said.
The workshop presentations will be followed by a question-and-answer session.
The students will attend workshops most of the day before learning about black history from guest speaker Tricia Teague, publisher of the Progressive Black newspaper.
“We wanted to have someone come to talk to the students about black history,” Cherry said.
The companies participating in career day include Armed Services, Concept College of Cosmetology, Danville Area Community College, East Central Illinois Community Action, Illinois Department of Employment Security, Vermilion County Health Department, Lakeview College of Nursing, Neuhoff Media, Sterling Auto Body, ThyssenKrupp Crankshaft and Watchfire. Retired educator Johnny Carey and Carolyn Kirk also will speak to students about education and respect.