Participants in the JFLI Career Exploration Program celebrated the completion of the summer career training program.
JOHN’S FOLLY — Four weeks of self-discovery, job skill training, goal realization, and networking came to a close for the 2015 JFLI Career Exploration students in August.
The aptly titled Career Exploration program was made possible through the Department of Labor, and instills students with the knowledge and skills needed to follow the career path that suits them best.
Participants will receive a stipend for the days they attended.
“We had a very bright group of kids here,” said facilitator Elaine Dillon. “There is no doubt in my mind that each of them will find and follow a career path that they are passionate about.”
The program placed emphasis upon following your passions, Dillon explained.
“A common theme amongst our guest speakers has been to do what you are passionate about,” she added.
Guest speakers include Ryan Moore from the Animal Care Center, semi-pro boxer Clayton Laurent, V.I. Police Department officers, representatives from the Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Coalition, and Kendall Cornejo of Cinnamon Bay Water Sports.
“My favorite speaker was definitely Clayton Laurent,” said Chenijah Dawson, 14. “He had so many inspiring things to say about following your dreams and being smart with your money. I’ll always remember that he said that I should strive to be wealthy and not just rich.”
Alongside hearing testimonies from various guests, students completed several different exercises that were drafted and placed into portfolios.
Portfolios also contain important documents such as their resumes. Resume consultation was provided by a young program facilitator and Rick Barksdale and Chaliese Summers.
The Barksdale and Summers not only focused on career exploration techniques, but also instructed students in different job skills they can obtain now.
“I learned a lot about different qualities that a great employee should have,” said sixteen year old Naiquan Frett. “I do a good job at being punctual so I’m always on time, but I need to work on being more self-motivated.”
Outside Learning Activities
Students also had fun outside of learning activities during field trips.
“My favorite field trip was when we rode on the Sadie Sea,” said fifteen year old Raquisha Edwards. “I loved all the swimming and dancing we did!”
“Yeah I liked how we bonded with each other and hearing about how the captain got to sail the world,” Chenijah Dawson chimed in.
Earlier on in the program, students also took a tour of the Caneel Bay Resort grounds.
“I liked the Caneel Bay trip because we got to meet the different department heads and we got to hear how they do their jobs,” said one student.
The program culminated in a picnic where students were reminiscent and were thankful for the knowledge they received.
“The program has prepared us to be the best employees we can be,” said one student.
“Even though we didn’t actually work, we learned the basics about getting and having a job,” said Genesis Dawson, 15.
“I’m going to use everything I learned here while I’m young, and when I grow older too,” said Marc Durand. “This program helped all of us to work towards finding a career we are passionate about.”
“I’m lucky to have participated, because there aren’t a lot of things for teens to join in on St. John,” added Marc Durand.