More than 30 high school students attended a “Pathways2Careers” open house at Virginia Peninsula Community College’s Historic Triangle Campus on Sept. 12. The free event was sponsored by the Greater Williamsburg Chamber of Commerce to introduce students to the College and the business community.
Faculty and staff representing VPCC shared information about degree and workforce development programs. Members of the Chamber and a representative from Baylands Family Credit Union led discussions on proper attire for an interview, interview skills, and creating and delivering an elevator pitch.
Shannon Swendsen from VPCC answered questions about the medical field and provided hands-on activities. Another College representative offered the students a virtual welding experience.
“The event received rave reviews from the parents, the Chamber of Commerce staff, and the Williamsburg Commissioner of the Revenue,” said VPCC President Dr. Towuanna Porter Brannon, who noted students and parents didn’t leave until 8 p.m., an hour later than scheduled.
The program was for students in ninth-12th grade, including those who are home-schooled. At the end of the program, all students had the opportunity to apply for internships and externships with the chamber’s business partners. Students who were juniors or seniors had the chance to be interviewed for a trade school scholarship.
“The students really enjoyed the night. A lot of great questions,” said Gary Randall, VPCC’s Workforce Development instructor and skills mentor.
In attendance from VPCC were Corey Buttram from enrollment management, and Dr. Mary Romero, Shontell White, Patrecia Gary, William Wade, and Randall from Workforce Development.
Representing the Greater Williamsburg Chamber of Commerce were Lara Overy, Sherri Thrift, Robbie Garnett, Frank Arlotto, Fred Hayes, Lauren Moore, and Ann Bowe.
For more information on Virginia Peninsula Community College, go to www.vpcc.edu.