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Holy Childhood holds 'Career Talks' - Students exposed to wide range of professions, fields

Published:Sunday | March 13, 2011 | 12:00 AM
Veterinarian and Holy Childhood High School past student Dr Megan Ritchie (left) points out the joy of veterinary medicine to third-form students Kristal Campbell (centre) and Reshena Seabourne with Sarah the dog, at the Jamaica Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' Winchester Avenue location, recently. - Contributed

When you blend heartfelt enthusiasm and the youthful demeanour of 250 high school students, with the dedication and leadership of 28 of that high school's graduates, the combination presents compelling lessons.

For Holy Childhood High School, a 70-year-old bastion in Catholic educational tradition located in St Andrew, that formula is well-named 'Career Talks' and has an enviable four- year track record.

Hosted between March 1 and 4, Career Talks, this year, spanned the range from architecture, business, cosmetology, defence and security, education, engineering, fashion, and law, to media, medicine, nursing, ophthalmology, the performing arts, and veterinary medicine. Remarkably, the more traditional fields of law and medicine consistently receive the most requests for Career Talks at Holy Childhood than any other field.

Encouraging healthy ambitions

The aim is to encourage healthy ambitions and positive attitudes towards work, by providing first-hand observation of the professionals at work in typical day-to-day settings. This provides invaluable experience even for students who have not yet decided which career to pursue.

"In all of the experiences for our students of today, we must appeal to the stimulation of all the students' senses in order to compete effectively," said Vice-principal Angela Stennett.

"Greater visibility of the alumnae and taking the students on the site visits will help foster one-on-one bonding".

Back in 2008, after a hiatus of several years, the Alumnae Association rejuvenated the Career Talks idea with numerous alums returning to the classroom, this time in the role of presenters on their livelihood.

Overwhelming success

The joyous faces of students, keen to welcome those who had themselves passed through the corridors of Holy Childhood, tell their own story.

Career Talks had overwhelming success in 2010, with some 400 students participating during four days of presentations by past students. Since 2008, alumnae presentations on over 35 professions and career paths have been conducted.

This year, visits to alumnae's places of work formed part of Career Talks .

Five students donned hard hats for a safety-first introduction to engineering, as eagerly as eight students cradled pets looking for homes, at the Winchester Avenue location of the Jamaica Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Dr Rhonda Hutson, consultant specialist in emergency medicine at the University Hospital of the West Indies, and her colleagues in cardiology and pathology, welcomed 14 students, taking them under their wings for two days, with tours and presentations.


CAPTION: Veterinarian and Holy Childhood High School past student Dr Megan Ritchie (left) points out the joy of veterinary medicine to third-form students Kristal Campbell (centre) and Reshena Seabourne with Sarah the dog, at the Jamaica Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' Winchester Avenue location, recently. - Contributed