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Cavaliers Take Part in BizEd

Area business leaders visited CHS as part of BizEd, a new initiative by the Union County Education Foundation.

CHS was excited to be part of the first year of BizEd 2012, a new initiative by the Union County Education Foundation to connect area businesses and business leaders directly to UCPS schools and classrooms. On November 15, 2012, 35 area business leaders arrived at CHS ready to speak to students about their education and careers. Five teachers shared the experiences their students had.

CTE teacher Dan Hartman said, “My guest speaker was John Flanagan. He is the Associate Director of the Global Command Center for Merck & Co. He was excellent. Merck is currently 57 on the Fortune 500 list. He spoke about Merck's network, how big it is and what happened to Merck during Hurricane Sandy. He described what happened when a company of that size loses all communication between its manufacturing and research facilities and the corporate HQ. He answered questions about how much power Merck uses and what it costs per month.

“Mr. Flanagan was very impressed with our Microsoft certifications. He told the students he does not see that when he interviews prospective employees. He told them that PowerPoint and Word were the two programs they would use extensively when they entered the work force.”

English teacher Monica Laux shared, “Sandra Spivey from Spivey Insurance Group came to visit us. She shared details about working in the insurance industry. She talked about how most people think it is boring but it is exciting and fast-paced. Ms. Spivey also shared information about salaries and education required. She showed a video of insurance agents at conferences doing the "Gangman Style" dance to show how fun they are!

“The students really gained a new perspective on alternative career opportunities. They loved hearing about the jobs involved that aren't stereotypical, such as a Social Media or Special Marketing Chair. The students' stereotype of insurance agents was also challenged in an exciting way. Sandra Spivey was a great speaker. The students were active participants in the presentation and learned so much about career opportunities that they had never considered.”

Science teacher Annie Cox said, “Our guest was Edward McFadden, a nuclear engineer with Duke Energy. He shared how he solves problems or works to fix problems that could occur with nuclear energy. He shared other jobs that Duke Energy offers that are not engineering jobs - 2 year degree jobs that pay $60K - $75K a year. The students really enjoyed it. We just covered non-renewable resources which nuclear energy falls under so they did have some background knowledge.

“The opportunity for Edward McFadden to come into the building and speak to the CP Earth and Environmental Science classes was great because they were provided with information about jobs that are available with only a 2 year degree if they chose not to go to college for 4+ years.”

Coach Michael Helms said, “Our visitor was Phil Campbell from Samaritan's Feet. He described how they distribute shoes all over the world, including the US, to people who do not own shoes. He also told us about the events they have to raise money to buy the shoes. They have deals with four shoe companies to purchase shoes at $10 a pair. He also told us about volunteer opportunities with their organization. My students were struck by the number of kids worldwide who have never owned a pair of shoes.”

CTE teacher Sheila Wright said, “My students were visited by John Lerch of Chemical Engineer Bakery Food Company. He shared his college experience and how he became a supervisor. The students were very attentive and they listened well. They gained hope in their education because he talked about how he didn't have the best grades in high school, but he worked hard in college and never gave up on himself.”

Ms. Wright summed up, “I thought BizEd was a great experience for me and the students. This is a great way for students to see what a good education can do. The speakers experienced ways that they can become successful just by finding what they are passionate about and making a career out of it.”

The whole Cuthbertson cluster was involved in BizEd this first year, including CHS, Cuthbertson Middle School, Kensington Elementary, and New Town Elementary. Thank you to all our honored guests for sharing their time and experiences with us!

Written by: Paula White
Posted: Nov 29, 2012 by Paula White

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