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Fifth graders encouraged to dream big at career fair

Fifth graders encouraged to dream big...

SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Public Schools' elementary counselors say fifth grade is when kids start to really think about what they want to be when they grow up. While they welcome every career path, counselors want their students to know what kind of education and skills it takes to get there.

On Tuesday, district schools hosted its 2,500 fifth graders at the Spokane Convention Center for a career fair. Each student had the chance to speak with over 95 different employers around Spokane.

For some students, like Kara Double, its a no-brainer where she sees herself in ten years.

“My dream is to be a lawyer,” said Double.

Many people have told her she'd make a good defender, but not because she's good at arguing.

 “I wear this one jacket all the time and it makes me look like a lawyer, Double said.

Double is excited about massive amounts of writing but had questions about what it takes to pass the bar. At the career fair, she had the opportunity to get them answered by a local lawyer.

For students that were a bit unsure, teachers armed them with a pen and a graphic organizer.

Addisyn Hilker, a fifth grader explained, “you find jobs around here and write what you want to be and at the end whatever job you like best, you put in the middle.”

When they get back to school, the graphic organizer will help them to write a paper on the experience.

The chance to speak with real, live soldiers, doctors and firefighters helped students to build a plan for their future and for the professionals, the encounters were just as meaningful.

Rik Nelson is a local artist who says he didn't have exposure to certain careers growing up.

“If you were good in any academic discipline, you were put in honors classes and there was no art in the honors program so I had to wait till i was in college.”

Rik wishes someone told him that he could be whatever he wanted; the message he shared at his booth today.

“Be innovative, take chances and to try things that haven't been tried before,” Rik added.