Students gather at KSU Salem for Career Day

SALEM — With its history of supporting community youth through several important programs, the Salem Rotary Club held its annual Career Day at Kent State Salem recently.

The event featured professionals, counselors and teachers zeroing in on providing guidance to high school juniors, whom Rotary vocational chairman Dr. Peter Apicella said were at the point where they “should be thinking about a career.”

With the assistance of Gina Dermotta, Matthew Butts, director of advancement at KSU; Megan Ellis, guidance counselor at Salem High School; and nearly 70 Rotarians and non-Rotarians provided the half-day program for more than 135 Salem High School juniors.

The Rotary Club has long provided vocational support for the youth in the community through the career day, helping to match hundreds of junior and senior students with potential careers.

Students choose to attend two, one-hour sessions in the afternoon from a wide selection of careers including the medical and health fields, teaching, counseling, military and skilled trades like carpentry, electrical, masonry, plumbing, welding, machinists, mechanics, truck driving, along with agricultural, culinary and cosmetology careers and many others.

Apicella said, “Giving back is so important for our small community. The Rotarians and other participants in our Career Day are happy to share our careers with the students to help them find the best pathway to achieve their dreams.”

Sharing career experience is the biggest part what the program is about.

In one session, Lisa Kravec, marketing manager for Butech Bliss in Salem, provided students with insights into marketing by relating her previous news media experience while discussing technical aspects students may not have been aware of.

Rotarians assisted throughout the day overseeing the students.

The morning session included career discussions on scholarships through the Salem High School Alumni Association and Salem Community Foundation; “Planning for your future;” “Career opportunities, job prospects and economic realities;” and “Values, skills, applications, internships, volunteering” presented by alumnus and recently graduated physician Austin Fredrickson.

While discussing their background with students, professionals explained what they do and how they got there; what education and special testing was required; what they liked best and least their careers; how the future looked; and any recommendations they would give to anyone interested in their career.

The Rotary said the program has been a huge success and it looks forward to continuing this project for future Salem High School students.