Last Thursday, about 200 high school sophomore girls from 6 local schools had the opportunity to attend the 15th Annual Non-Traditional Employment for Women Workshop at Quaker Haven Camp in Syracuse. Students from Warsaw, Wawasee, Fairfield, Tippecanoe Valley, and Whitko high schools along with a few homeschooled students were in attendance. This workshop allows young women to see the possibilities for their future with a career that each may not have thought about or known was available to them. The purpose of this workshop is to expand the career possibilities for young women to consider and hopefully find one that is of interest. The information presented included education & training, a typical workday, work environments, wage information, employment forecasts, and advantages for women in these occupations. The girls were able to have hands-on experience with "try-it" activities in most of the career opportunities presented. These activities included: building a toolbox, doing a weather report, dressing like a firefighter, welding a souvenir, drilling into bones, designing & carving fruit centerpieces, suturing bananas, hosting an auction, and much more!
The morning began with an inspiring keynote address from local author & motivational speaker, Natalie Replogle. Following a quick icebreaker game, Natalie shared her own story of struggle & triumph as she found her calling in life even after many different career attempts. She encouraged the students to not always look at failure negatively and to remember that each of them were made uniquely and for a specific purpose in life.
After our keynote, students were able to break off into five different fifteen-minute roundtable discussion sessions with our speakers to learn more in-depth about their individual careers. The afternoon was spent experiencing all of the awesome try-it activities.
This workshop would not have been made possible without the phenomenal support of all those involved. Special thanks to our amazing speakers, selfless volunteers, hard-working N.E.W. staff members, and generous sponsors including:
Warsaw Area Career Center
Wawasee Area Career & Technical Cooperative
Carl D. Perkins Grant
The Warsaw Education Foundation
Building Trades students from WACC & WACTC
Clayton Garden Center
Quaker Haven Camp
WACC Welding Technology Lab
WCS Maintenance Staff
Wyndham Garden Warsaw