Ninth-graders learn about non-traditional careers

AMORY – Work ethic was a word stressed often at the non-traditional career program for ninth-graders at Amory High School on Feb. 19.

ALICE ORTIZ/MONROE JOURNAL NON-TRADITIONAL CAREERS - Amory School District Child Nutrition Director Steve Stockton, right, talks to Amory High School ninth-graders, Bryson Wigginton, Claire Carson, Sharquesia Hudson and Marcus Glenn, after the non-traditional program.

ALICE ORTIZ/MONROE JOURNAL
NON-TRADITIONAL CAREERS – Amory School District Child Nutrition Director Steve Stockton, right, talks to Amory High School ninth-graders, Bryson Wigginton, Claire Carson, Sharquesia Hudson and Marcus Glenn, after the non-traditional program.

Amory School District Child Nutrition Director Steve Stockton served as speaker.  He told how the number one priority when searching for a job is work ethnic.  Employers are looking for employees who are eager to work, punctual for work, do their work in a timely manner and are interested in their job.
“Try to do your very best in whatever you do and you will be successful,” Stockton said.
He shared how his parents had always cooked and had a catering business where he helpd. Stockton then decided to leave marketing and come home and help with the catering business.
“I had sold my catering business when the superintendent called and said he didn’t have a food director. I told him I’d give it a shot and fill in until they got somebody. That was 18 years ago,” Stockton said.
Stockton said he had never seen a man in the position before, but today there are 25 men in child nutrition in the state. He said salaries in that area now made it a career where men could make a living.
He also said that those who were interested in some area of coaching could also get into nutrition. In Mississippi, there are five child nutrition directors who are also coaches.
The students were told the importance of grades in getting acceptance into vocational programs at Amory High School.
“I want to encourage you to check out the culinary arts program. You get the skills and certification necessary to work in any restaurant. It will open doors for you. A job in a restaurant can help pay for your college,” Stockton said.
Career & Technical Center counselor Stella Smith told the ninth-graders their class was the first one at AHS that would need the Individual Career Academic Plan (ICAP) for graduation.
ICAP assists students in developing and maintaining a personalized post-secondary plan that ensures readiness for post-secondary and workforce success.  An ICAP should be designed to assist a student and his or her parent or legal guardian in exploring the post-secondary career and educational opportunities available to the student, aligning course work and curriculum, applying to post-secondary education institutions, securing financial aid and ultimately entering the workforce.
“There are lots of opportunities for all of you. It is important to build a relationship with your teacher. That will benefit you through your school years,” Stockton said.