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Northern Lehigh students learn about career paths

Students in the Northern Lehigh School District learned about the importance of career pathways.

They can thank the district’s inaugural Career, College, & Military Readiness Fair held Friday in the high school gymnasium for the life lesson.

Students in grades 7-12 had four 50-minute sessions throughout the day where they could rotate in and out of the gym to visit vendor tables.

As part of the event, students were able to meet and gather information from various postsecondary vendors and community organizations.

That included branches of the military, corporations, small local businesses, colleges, universities, technical schools, workforce programs, first responders and community membership organizations.

Additionally, there were community membership organizations that shared information with the students about opportunities to help support their community.

That included the Rotary Club of Slatington, which was represented at the event by Monica Sellers, Past Centennial President.

“We want them to apply themselves, socialize,” Sellers said. “We encourage them to pursue their interests; we’re always there for support.”

Senior Raven Klimek said she was impressed by the number of vendors in attendance.

“There’s a lot more careers than I expected, and they’re a lot more involved with the community than I thought,” Klimek said.

Fellow senior Brooke Nonnemacher echoed her classmate’s sentiment.

“It’s a good opportunity to see how much is really in the area,” Nonnemacher said.

As an additional bonus, some of the vendors volunteered to bring hard assets such as vehicles and equipment.

The vehicles were on display on Snyder Avenue, the street between the high school and the middle school, and near the entrance of the high school.

Northern Lehigh Middle School fifth-grader Mya Acosta joined her friends as they sat inside a firetruck from Star Hose Fire Company No. 1, Emerald.

“My favorite part is getting to sit in the back and learning about the cool gadgets and how to use it and save people,” said Mya, 11.

Tito Burgos, assistant fire chief, Star Hose Fire Company No. 1, Emerald, said, “This is awesome, and it gives us good exposure. We all started when we were 14, 15, and we’re trying to reciprocate that.”

Some equipment was also on display in the gymnasium near vendor tables.

Michael Strohl, assistant middle school/high school principal, said the goal of the event was to provide education/information to students about career pathways.

Strohl said there were about 750 students who participated in the event.

He added the event was a great way for organizations to provide valuable future ready skills and career pathway opportunities to the students.

“We want to make it an annual event,” Strohl said. “We wanted to provide resources for our students.”

Tito Burgos, assistant fire chief, Star Hose Fire Company No. 1, stands out front of this firetruck as Northern Lehigh Middle School fifth-graders Mya Acosta, 11; Rihame Ouaziz, 10; Toreena Johnson, 12; Ashley Duarte-Estrada 11; and Yarielys Rivera-Pimentel, 11, sit inside during the Career, College, & Military Readiness Fair held Friday at Northern Lehigh High School. TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS
Northern Lehigh High School students Landon Moll, ninth grade; Chase Moffitt, 10th grade; and Cyrus Kinchen, ninth grade, perform push-ups by the Army table that was set up inside the Northern Lehigh High School gymnasium as part of the Career, College, & Military Readiness Fair.
Northern Lehigh High School seniors Brooke Nonnemacher and Raven Klimek receive useful information from Michelle Long, volunteer, and Denise “Neice Eie” Martinez, founder/CEO/President of Caring Hearts, Slatington, during the Career, College, & Military Readiness Fair held Friday in the Northern Lehigh High School gymnasium.