“Career Day is a day that offers the students an opportunity to experience various types of careers,” said Christine Spear, a counselor at the school.
Students will get the chance to examine different careers and see if they are something they would like to do someday.
“This year ... the focus is on being interactive,” Spear said.
She asked participants to set up activities where students can participate in the proceedings.
Having a Career Day is beneficial to the students because it gives them a chance, before they enter high school, to figure out things they are interested in rather than enter high school without any ideas about what they want to do with their lives.
Nicole Herrick, a new product cost accountant from Caterpillar, explained her job to a group of students using a scenario.
She said an accountant will receive a bill of material describing how much the components of a particular product cost and data from the marketing department on how many items can be sold at what price. She used the example of a $20,000 product selling for $25,000, generating $2.5 million in profits based on 500 units sold.
Her boss approves of the effort but wants to make $3 million while still maintaining product quality. There are two options, charge more or cut cost, but cutting costs too much means an inferior product.
So the accountant goes to engineering and they re-engineer the product so it costs $500 less, bumping the profits up to $2.8 million. The marketing department reports that increasing the price to $30,000 means a profit of $10,000 but only 300 units sold. That comes out to $3 million total profit and the boss is happy.
Herrick then gave the students general career advice, including exploring their interests through classes and clubs and being sure to improve their computer and communications skills.
“I like it because it had a lot of pictures and was easy to understand,” said David Adams, an eighth-grader.
He ultimately wants to be an electrician, particularly an outside plant technician for AT&T.
“It was pretty informative,” said Malik Tarver, another eighth-grader. “It was ... very helpful, depending on whether or not you want to be an accountant.”
He ultimately wants to be a neurosurgeon.
Susan Myerscough, a teacher for the visually impaired from the Griffin RESA, explained to another group of students about how braille worked. She quizzed students on what different braille patterns meant, using tennis balls in a muffin tin to demonstrate. She described how she first got involved with working with the visually impaired through volunteering while in college.