Students refine a career choice

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 29, 2007

CATLETTSBURG, Ky. — Many young people don’t start thinking about careers until they choose a college, but a local business has created an event to help change that.

The diversity team at Marathon’s Catlettsburg Refinery has launched its first annual career day event.

“A lot of these kids have been really excited about it,” said Human Resource Manager Greg Jackson. “Hopefully we can spark some interest in some of these kids so after high school they can go to college for one of these disciplines and get them headed down that path.”

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More than 1,100

8th graders from eight area schools have attended the event over the past two weeks. Students from Rock Hill Middle School participate on Friday.

“This place is great. I’ve learned a lot about chemistry and how they engineer stuff,” said RHMS student Amber Young. “The engineering looks cool. That’d be a good job because you get to design stuff and watch them come to life. That’d be really awesome.”

Many of the students are familiar with Marathon.

“I think it’s pretty interesting. I already knew a lot of this because my dad works for Marathon,” said James Barker. “Dad is the terminal supervisor at finished products. I want to eventually take his position, but I’d also like to be a chemical engineer.”

Denise Farley organizes the field trips at Rock Hill Middle School.

“A lot of these kids don’t have experiences that expose them to different careers,” he said. “This is more in depth than what we can give them in the classroom. This actually takes them to the source.”

Farley said the students get both college and career exposure to help them prepare for the future.

“These kids are defiantly old enough to start making career choices,” he said. “They come out with statements like ‘I plan to do this’ and depending on what they say, we try to gear them toward certain classes.”

“These are eighth graders. Starting next year as freshmen, those high school records and their GPA, that’s what goes towards their admittance to college,” Farley said. “They need to understand that this is their last chance before the real thing.”

Marathon plans another tour, possibly in th spring, to include more schools.