“There were 172 seniors from Cartersville High School who attended the PROBE [college] fair this year ... and one thing [Principal Steven Butler] wanted to do is involve our juniors and seniors in a career day because our freshmen and sophomores are taking [ACT and PSAT] tests today, so it’s just a good day to have the juniors and seniors involved in a well-rounded career day,” Graduation Coach Robin Hurley said.
Butler, who is serving his first year as principal of CHS, said the intent of bringing a college and career fair to the school, as well as have alumni speak, is to have students begin looking past graduation and onto the rest of their lives.
“Yes, we want kids to graduate, that’s very important, but that’s just a stepping stone,” Butler said. “When kids graduate from Cartersville High School, they need to have options.
“That means they have to be prepared to go to college — that could be traditional college or a two-year technical school — they need to be prepared to go into the military, they need to be prepared to start a job in a career.”
He continued, “They need to have an idea of where they’re going when they leave [high school] and have the requisite skills to do that. Our goal is not to graduate students, our goal is for our graduates to have options when they leave here.”
Juniors Elyse Hoganson and Jon Vagase visited the U.S. Coast Guard information table.
“I’ve been looking into some military [careers], I’m not exactly sure what I want to do and I don’t know much about [the U.S. Coast Guard], so I figured I’d listen to [volunteer Bob Baude],” Hoganson said.
Vagase said he had a prior interest in the military and would consider a career in the military after high school.
“Anything that has to do with [the military] has always been an interest for me and I just wanted to learn more about it,” Vagase said.
One CHS graduate, Dyer Kennedy, spoke to a group of seniors about developing a plan outlining their goals for life while still in high school. A 2005 graduate and technical analyst of financial markets, he said looking ahead includes networking and making contacts within potential career fields.
“Start taking active steps to get you into the right place because you want to put yourself ahead of the game,” Kennedy said. “If you can meet one person that does something you want to do, you’ll be ahead of a large percent of people your age who are graduating.
“I want to tell you that you’re here and you think maybe you’re too late for anything at this point in high school ... but I still feel young and I’m about to be 26, so you’re very young, but you’re still adults and [your age] just means you have so many opportunities to do what you want to do. ... The point is to always be striving to do the best with what you have, whatever that may be, because that’s the only way you’re going to be successful.”