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“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.” Beverly Sills

Hinckley-Big Rock Middle School had its annual Career Day on May 6th.  As a school and a staff we continue to see the importance of exposing our students to career opportunities. When using the words career readiness, we are referring to graduates who have the soft skills and motivation to pursue a self-directed goal, adapt to challenges along the way, and know the options to obtain their post-secondary career. The goal of Career Day at HBRMS is to help in the students’ development of a self-directed goal and knowledge about the options to obtain post-secondary careers. 

The students at HBRMS had over 25 presenters who engaged in discussions about their careers and paths to their careers. We continue to get a variety of careers which required different post-secondary training. Students are introduced to Career Clusters (see below) through an Oklahoma Career Cluster Interest Survey.  

The following is a list of careers that were represented:  Attorney, Financial Planner, Cosmetology, Plumber, Pastor/Caterer, Veterinarian, Realtor, Banker, Attorney, Small Business Owner More Polish Pottery, College Athletics, DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office, IVVC, District, Banker, Mechanic, Author, Nurse, Teacher/Sports Official, Stem Careers in Agriculture, US Navy, Music Marketing Manager, Principal, Small Business Travel Agent, Supply Chain Manager – Ulta Beauty, Teacher  

Here is some insight provided by our students on their experiences:

I enjoyed being able to choose 4 different career speakers during the day.  Mr. Novotny and Jayden Johnson current ISU basketball player was cool. 

- D.J. Hansen 6th 

Career Day offered me the opportunity to start looking at jobs I may be interested in when I get older. 

- Clarissa Ramos 6th grade

I enjoyed that he was able to see stuff outside of the Hinckley and Big Rock communities.

- Gavin Pickert 6th grade

Learning about people’s paths to where they are now with their careers was my favorite part. 

- Matilda Simon 7th grade

I am just glad we were able to have our Career Day this year.

- Ethan White 7th grade

Mr. Daniel Thom of JMT plumbing thanks for coming in and talking about work in the plumbing trade with us!  

Jenna Thom enjoyed seeing dad at school and finding out what he does all day long.

HBR alum Matt Bish discussing with student financial planner.

Financial planning seems to be a fascinating option when I grow up.

- Evie Buckston 7th grade

HBR # 429 School Nurse Emily Oldenburg discussing the field of nursing.

This year we had two small business presenters. 

Mrs. Rebecca Gengler with More Polish Pottery

Mrs. Debra White with her travel agency

Katarina Gengler enjoyed having mom come in and talk about her business. 

Abigail White also thought it was neat to learn more about what mom does with her business.

IVVC Administrator Laura Edwards discuss opportunities at IVVC and post high school.  
HBR Alum Emily Herrmann shares her cosmetology skills. 

Ava Hane 7th grade says she learned that a health head of hair grows a ½ inch a month. WOW! 

HBR Alum Tim Badal Pastor/Catering takes a question during one of his presentations.

I was amazed on how much planning and preparation goes into a catering business.

- Evan Flex 6th grade

Pastor was my favorite I learned a lot more goes into the job than before.

- Wyatt Eggers 8th grade

HBR Alum Allison Pickert share the duties of a Supply Chain Manager for Ulta Beauty

Ulta Beauty was awesome, and it was fun to go and explore three more!- Breann Wolf 6th grade

HBR Alum Lori Nelson returns and talks about her career in Music Marketing.

Retired HBRHS and HBRMS teacher, Mrs. Spurgeon, returns to talk about the teaching profession. 

Local Author Marci Viland talks about her upcoming book.
This year we had three members of the Dekalb County Sheriffs office Deputy Megan Pettengell, Detective Josh Duehning (Pictured) and Mrs. Burgh’s husband Jim Burgh Chief Deputy 

Career day was an awesome experience.  Detective Duehning taught us how they catch the bad guys. - Adam N 6th grade

HBR Alum Jared Thorp talks about being a fireman and paramedic.
Mrs. Biletzky’s husband Eric poses while speaking about being a Manager of Information Services at NIU 

At the conclusion of the day, students were given a Career Cluster survey. They were also allotted time to go online with XELLO. XELLO is a program that helps students build the skills, knowledge and create plans to be future ready.  The program uses an investigative, discovery-based learning process. Students better understand themselves, their future career options, and the 21st century skills they’ll need to succeed. For more information, please contact our office. All our students should have a log-in.

On behalf of the students, staff and myself, I want to thank our presenters very much for presenting at our HBRMS Career Day.   We believe educational experiences like this are critical in our students’ development.  We couldn’t have done it without the dedicated professionals who are willing to share their knowledge and time.  

Thanks also to HBRMS staff members, Mr. Bastian and Mrs. Burgh, for helping organize the students schedule, Mrs. Nokes for putting together the biographies, Mr. Jourdan for being the emcee again this year, and every other staff member for making the day a huge success.