Career, College Fair to expand

Published 10:01 pm Thursday, January 23, 2014

Suffolk Public Schools says it is expanding and extending its Career and College Readiness Fair this year in response to feedback from 2013’s first event.

At King’s Fork Middle School Feb. 1, the fair will run an hour longer than last year, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., so students can attend five workshop sessions, district spokeswoman Bethanne Bradshaw said.

Feedback from last year’s event was “generally very favorable,” she said, but some students and parents wished “they could have gone to more sessions.”

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Also based on feedback, sessions for this year have in some cases been eliminated, and new ones will be offered.

“We are doing some different ones, (including) one on money management,” Bradshaw said. Another new session, she added, is on “understanding the temperaments of your teachers and leaders.”

The latter is “basically talking about how students need to understand personality types so they can do better in class or better as an employee,” she said.

Bradshaw said many of the sessions are “guidance counselor-driven, because they see more of the different things that students may need.”

The fair offers crucial information on transitioning from middle to high school, Bradshaw said, including details on specialty programs such as International Baccalaureate, Project Lead the Way, Governor’s School for the Arts, the Pruden Center for Industry and Technology, and the future Health and Medical Science Academy at Lakeland High School.

Students can inventory their skills and interests to learn what careers might suit them, learn about researching college and career options and find out about advanced-studies options, including Advanced Placement, dual enrollment and honors.

Although the fair focuses more on getting students ready for college, it also covers transitioning to the workforce, Bradshaw said, recognizing that higher education isn’t for everyone.

Workforce-transitioning topics include career opportunities and apprenticeships in Hampton Roads, job-search skills and military options for graduates.

Bradshaw urged folks to pre-register for the fair, not least so that organizers know how many Chick-fil-A sandwiches to order — which will be provided free — and how many handouts to prepare.

She said the Suffolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority may be able to organize transportation for groups attending from public housing, and church and other groups are welcome.

More information on the fair is available at, and participants can register online at Registration forms are also available at schools.

For easier registration for groups, Bradshaw can been reached at 925-6752 or via

The fair is co-sponsored by the Suffolk Education Foundation.