Middle school students looking at different career paths


ALBERT LEA, Minn.- Southwest Middle School is teaming up with businesses in town to give students a better understanding on what job fields they might explore after high school. They are also collaborating with Albert Lea – Freeborn County Chamber of Commerce because they believe the sooner kids develop interests in career paths the better.

“One of the pieces that we look at in the middle school is trying to get the students to have an idea of their story or their future story when they leave,” said John Double, Assistant Principal at Southwest Middle School.

That’s why Double says it’s important to show his students all the different career fields that Albert Lea has to offer.

Starting in January, different businesses will come to Southwest and talk to the kids about what they do, hopefully sparking their interest and giving them a reason to stay in the area after graduation.

“The earlier you get kids engaged in occupations other than what they see on television or see going around town, the better chance you have for creating that workforce,” said Randy Kehr, Executive Director for Albert Lea – Freeborn County Chamber of Commerce.

Kehr says it’s all about giving the students a blueprint for the future.

“The earlier they can do it the better, so they can plan their career path through high school on into college or a career and technical school and be ready to enter the workforce when they graduate,” said Kehr.

However, when it comes to Double he wants to make sure these kids don’t miss out on any opportunities.

“It’s something to see the work that they do in the classroom and to get them on track earlier,” said Double. “So they’re ready and they know what they want to do or start forming some ideas.”

They are hoping to feature a different business each week from January through mid-April. If you are interested in visiting the school to talk with students about your career field you can contact Southwest Middle School or Albert Lea – Freeborn County Chamber of Commerce.

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