Nurturing career ambitions

Published 12:32 pm Saturday, October 18, 2014

As you’ll likely recall from your own childhood, adults at the time would frequently ask, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

Perhaps you surprised them by stating an uncommon goal, such as becoming a judge, or a race car driver or even a circus lion tamer, rather than a doctor, or a lawyer or a police officer. Perhaps you’ve surprised yourself by going into a profession that was far removed from those early ambitions such as an auto mechanic instead of an architect, or insurance agent instead of a school teacher.

Such a question doesn’t just serve to start conversation, but can also inspire dreams and ambitions.

For the past several days, schools throughout the commonwealth have been doing that by participating in Virginia Career Week, Oct. 12-18. This is especially intended to encourage students in the elementary, middle and high schools to consider and explore the work they want to do later in life.

As reported in this newspaper (“A world of choices” on Oct. 17), several professionals met with students from Southampton Middle School to talk about career options in forestry, law enforcement and nursing, to name a few.

The day before, the students found out about community colleges and technical schools, and how each can serve to further their learning.

We believe such meetings go a long way in encouraging the students to taking the necessary steps to achieving their personal goals, starting with their education now.

We’d like to suggest that more of these programs be arranged, especially on the elementary and middle school levels.

And perhaps people in white collar and blue collar professions could even consider mentoring the high schoolers who’ve shown a commitment to their career goals.