Pitman High School junior Trevor Knudsen came to the 4th annual Career Fair on Wednesday with pressing questions about his future.
Knudsen, along with hundreds of other students, left with a better understanding of what types of jobs and educational opportunities are available thanks to the 25 businesses, colleges and agencies from the Central Valley that attended the event.
“I learned about all the different careers and pathways I can take once I graduate from school,” said Knudsen. "They gave you tips on what college path to go on; they explained more of what they do, and more insight into what the industry has. Thanks to the job fair I was able to narrow down my options and have an idea of what I want to do once I graduate from college.”
Anna Eshoo, a PHS business teacher and Future Business Leaders of America co-advisor, started the Career Fair in 2003 at Turlock Junior High. Now at Pitman, she’s hosted the event for the past four years and continues to invite businesses from the Central Valley to help students plan their future.
“This is about giving the kids the opportunity to see what’s out there, not only for seniors who may be looking for jobs, but also for freshmen — just to get them thinking about what careers or jobs they may want to explore,” said Eshoo. “I’ve had students who attended career fairs that I’ve coordinated and they’ve landed a job as soon as they graduated from high school.”
The purpose of the fair, Eshoo added, wasn't to find definitive answers to every student's career-related questions, but to inspire attendees and connect them with professionals who may be able to expose students to new, unexpected career choices.
One of the busiest sections at the fair was the Turlock Fire Department, which had a constant flow of eager students looking for a shot at a job.
“When I was a high school student I never had the opportunity to attend job fairs in helping me choose a career pathway,” said Fire Captain Troy Gonzales. “These fairs are helpful because students get to see what’s out there.”