Pixel Tracker

Tuesday, December 18 , 2018, 6:18 pm | Fair 55º

 
 
 
 

Program Provides a One-Stop Shop for Students to Get Glimpse of Potential Careers

The Workforce Investment Board and Chambers of Commerce sponsor 'Linking Youth to Local Employers'

High school students got the chance Tuesday to meet potential future employers at the “Linking Youth to Local Employers” program sponsored by the Santa Barbara County Workforce Investment Board and Chambers of Commerce countywide at the 83-year-old Hill-Carrillo Adobe.

Santa Barbara Region Chamber of Commerce President Steve Cushman said students may not understand the historical significance of the Hill-Carrillo Adobe, the original meeting place of the Santa Barbara City Council, but the evening was about exposing youths to opportunities they wouldn’t see otherwise.

“The goal is to expose kids to a mix of careers that they would never be exposed to,” said Cushman, who said his first job was washing dishes to pay for his lunch in elementary school. “I hope some will get summer jobs, some will be exposed to a career they couldn’t even imagine and some will hear stories they can relate to.”

There were 24 “conversation stations” where students were urged to talk to business owners, musicians, filmmakers, restaurant owners, journalists, architects, bankers and many other professionals. Some students entertained conversations with executives set up along the patio and throughout the building, while others played music with a professional musician in the courtyard.

Architect Michael Holliday of JM Holliday Associates said the variety is important because anything from a conversation to an example of professional work can ignite a student’s interest.

“You see the spark in their eyes when they see how much fun it is to be passionate about what you do,” he said. “The value of something like this is you never know what’s going to spark a kid to pursue a profession — it may be someone they talked to or something they saw. When kids get exposed to a variety of professions on one site, where is that going to happen elsewhere?”

Joe Aquino, a Santa Barbara County Youth Corps crew supervisor, brought some of his kids to the event. He said one can’t understate the importance of meeting professionals and making impressions in today’s job market.

“You come to one spot to meet a whole bunch of employers and do something in two hours that you couldn’t do trying to drive around town,” he said. “I hope my kids learn how to interview, how to talk professionally, read people’s expressions and ask the right questions.”

In Aquino’s day, he said he would go out to employers and shake their hands rather than send a résumé that may get 10 seconds of attention, adding that it makes events such as this that much more important.

“Times have changed. Nowadays you need to be more aware of what’s out there,” Aquino said. “Now there are so many people applying employers can’t meet 100 people so they go through résumés and pick 10 — you aren’t guaranteed they will even read them.”

The Chamber of Commerce established “A Chance for Change” scholarship program benefiting at-risk youths from gang violence, and the 10 contracted SBCC students attended the networking event.

“I hope their eyes are opened to something they would never see anywhere else,” Cushman said.

Maria deAlba, a mentor for the Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, sent two of her sons to last year’s event. She said they couldn’t stop talking about it and told all their friends, and that it resulted in summer jobs as well.

The program at the adobe was the first of three events at that location, with the other two scheduled for May 24 and June 21.

“I think it’s beautiful to see these kids coming out and talking to professionals about their careers,” Holliday said, “especially people who are interested and passionate about what they do.”

Noozhawk staff writer Alex Kacik can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Email
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership
×

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >

Meet Your Realtor Sponsored by Village Properties

Photo of Elizabeth Wagner
Elizabeth Wagner
"I consider myself to be an up front and honest agent and willing to talk my clients out of purchasing a property that isn’t right for them or won’t meet their needs in a year or two."

Full Profile >