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Thomas Marchiony

Thomas Marchiony received a prize for being one of the top participating students in Career Jam.

Eighth-grade students at Howard L. Goff Middle School participated in Career Jam, a virtual career fair, earlier this spring. Career Jam links students with local employers in a virtual environment, enabling them to explore the many exciting career pathways available here in the Capital Region.

At Career Jam, thousands of Capital Region students connected with representatives of business and industry for experiential learning activities designed to inspire career exploration and guide future course selection to shape career paths.

Intro to CTE – Home & Career Skills teacher, Debreen Oliva, has coordinated the event which is presented by Junior Achievement’s JA Inspire program and co-hosted by the Capital Region STEM HUB, WSWHE BOCES, Capital Region BOCES, Questar III BOCES, Center for Economic Growth & Capital Region Chamber of Commerce, Rensselaer County Chamber of Commerce and the Workforce Development Institute.

“With nearly 80 employers represented, students see that every skill level and career choice can be employed right here in the Capital Region,” said Mrs. Oliva.

The virtual Career Jam is set up like a real convention. When students enter the virtual lobby they navigate to the information booth for a schedule of events, visit the auditorium for presentations, and engage in an online walk around the exhibit hall to visit booths to explore many different career opportunities. Students also completed a scavenger hunt and competed for total points on a leaderboard challenge aimed at encouraging student engagement.

Goff student Thomas Marchiony received a prize for being one of the top participating students in Career Jam.

Students were prepared for this event through the Intro to CTE – Home & Career Skills curriculum. As part of Home & Career Skills, students engaged in career assessments and other tools to evaluate their interests, help them explore how their interests may relate to different careers and to see what is possible for their future. Students also prepared for a networking event, such as Career Jam, by developing their elevator pitch, which serves as a very impressive introduction of themselves and their career goals. ELA, social studies, and encore teachers have cooperated to provide class time to participate in this valuable experience.