Financial Consultant R.J. Barber may have been speaking to Windsor Central Middle School students about his job, but his message was a universal one that spans multiple professions.
“When you see a professional of any kind, you see the result of years of hard work. Young people may say, ‘I’m going to do that, I’m going to wear that suit and I’m going to drive that car.’, it’s not immediate,” said Barber, a 20-year veteran of his industry.
Each Friday during the school year, the Middle School will host a local professional who will share their professional pathway with students and answer questions about their job. The first such session took place on Friday when Barber, a Financial Consultant from Visions Federal Credit Union spoke about the finance industry and nature of the job.
“I hope they get some basic information about a rewarding career and, regardless of the career path, learn it’s not immediate. You have to work at it. It’s a process,” said Barber.
The Careers and Cookies series is part of the District’s Future Ready Knights program, which provides students with opportunities to explore seven career fields of interest: Agriculture, Business/Finance, Computer Science, Education, Engineering, Health Care and Trades.
“It was really cool. I want to be able to learn about as many jobs as I can,” said 6th grader Alex Medovich.
Through partnerships developed with local employers, students will have the ability to learn about career options, tour local businesses, receive hands-on training and begin to build their own professional network.
Prior to sessions with local professionals, students will learn about the importance of “soft skills” such as proper eye contact, a firm handshake and being punctual. They will also learn facts about different industries represented during the Careers and Cookies series, such as the education needed, median salary, local employers and job forecast for different professions.
“I was so impressed with the students. They were all engaged today,” said Windsor CSD Career Counselor Heather Noyd.