AmeriCorps hosts 16th annual Career Fair
A total of 381 Poplar Bluff High School sophomores participated in the 16th annual Career Fair on Thursday, Oct. 10, at Three Rivers College.
Organized by AmeriCorps, the event serves to connect area high schoolers with industry professionals in the fields of natural resources, business, human services, industrial technology, arts and communication, or health services, depending on selections made in a survey.
“I would encourage you to not be so narrow-minded, you dismiss opportunities that may come your way,” said Three Rivers Academic & Career Outreach Services Coordinator Amanda Taylor, noting she went to college for physical therapy before finding her passion in higher education. “This could be a future employer that’s standing in front of you today.”
Some community college students work toward an Associate of Arts degree before transferring to a four-year university, while others receive an Associate of Applied Science degree so they can enter the job market right away, Taylor told participants. She added that Three Rivers accepts 36 credit hours from the Technical Career Center, saving students $5,000 if they wish to transfer to the community college to earn a degree in half the time.
Tina Wilkins, PBHS counselor, highlighted dual credit options available through the College Now program, which allows students to graduate high school with a college degree at no direct cost. She shared how her husband Kevin chose the technical career education route and, not counting benefits, has either doubled or tripled her salary throughout the course of their 31-year marriage.
The host of the event, AmeriCorps Program Director Becky Winters, informed participants that they can earn a modest living allowance and an education award through the national service program if a one-year contract to tutor for the school system is fulfilled. She also mentioned that students could receive free tuition at a community college or a discount at many state institutions through the A+ Scholarship Program if certain community service, attendance and GPA requirements are met.