DOWNINGTOWN, PA — Throughout the week of November 15, Chester County Technical College High School (TCHS) students from all three campuses had the opportunity to participate in career readiness activities at the first-ever Career Ready Conference hosted by TCHS. The weeklong event also offered raffles, prizes and swag to students who participated in the activities.
The Career Ready Conference was created to provide students with experiences in areas related to career readiness indicators, which include career awareness, career acquisition, career retention and entrepreneurship. The sessions hosted throughout the week were engaging and interactive. They taught students about career preferences, career research, resume writing, mock job applications and job shadowing. Through the work that was completed, students learned how to research careers within and outside of Pennsylvania, salaries, certifications, education and potential job openings. They also took home resources and information to help guide them towards various options they will have post-graduation.
TCHS seniors participated in a hands-on workshop facilitated by the school counselors and learning support instructors about how to create a postsecondary plan for college, trade school, the workforce and the military. Students then learned how to prepare and dress for an interview and learned how to create a portfolio that showcased their skills and experiences.
Additionally, all seniors were invited to attend a Financial Reality Fair hosted by the Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union, where they learned what real-life finances may look like as an adult. Each senior was provided with a scenario and salary, then had to budget expenses that included a car, groceries, utilities, cell phones, cable, childcare, healthcare, housing, education and other amenities.
Ciera Cooper, TCHS Criminal Justice student from Great Valley High School, really enjoyed learning about budgeting. “I feel better prepared to save my money and use it wisely. I learned that I need to put as much money as possible into savings and only use it when absolutely needed,” said Cooper.
This interactive experience encouraged students to focus on the budget given to them and learn ways to help them control their future spending and finance. “The cost of some things – like a water bill – surprises many of the students,” said Patricia McAllister, youth financial education manager at Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union. Adding, “Through this fair, our hope is that students understand the importance of spending money. If they don’t have a picture of what’s happening in their finances, they will have trouble, so we try to help them focus on budgeting.”
For more information about TCHS, a part-time, public high school of choice specializing in career and technical education for students in grades 9-12, visit www.cciu.org/tchs.
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