West Michigan Virtual welcomes all students to career fair

By Curtis Wildfong • Last Updated 11:00 am on Thursday, January 30, 2014

GREENVILLE — The school may be virtual, but the chance for a face-to-face meeting with area businesses during West Michigan Virtual’s upcoming career fair is anything but.

Designed for any student throughout the community, Monday’s career fair will bring 15 different representatives from 15 different areas of employment to educate students on what it takes for a career in their field.

“We want to give students the chance to talk with people who are out there in the field and see what is out there,” said Ashley Whalen, manager of office administration and career development services at West Michigan Virtual. “The whole goal is to provide our students with the opportunity for a realistic career, to give students an education of what is really out there.”

From 6 to 7:30 p.m. Monday at the Flat River Community Library in Greenville, the fair is open for any students in the community grades six through 12. On hand will be representatives from fields such as accounting, electrical, fire fighting, library science, nursing, radio, social work, realty and more.

“This kind of gives them an idea of what is out there, even around here because it’s all local businesses doing it,” said West Michigan Virtual Director Dan Hodges. “I’m hoping it excites our students.”

Hodges is hoping to not only excite them, but to open their eyes to a number of careers they perhaps had never thought of before. Whalen said the goal is for students to see there are opportunities out there for people with all kinds of different skills, and hopes students will find one that matches their strengths.

“If you don’t know what you want it’s hard to be motivated to get there. This gives students the outlook for different possibilities,” she said. “They can pick a goal and go for it.”

Hodges said it is important for all students to be educated on different opportunities available to them, whether they plan on attending a post secondary school or not.

“They’re not only getting the schooling, but are being pushed toward a career and being shown to look at a career,” he said.

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