Hundreds of Students Learn about College and Career Opportunities

October 31, 2013

Valdosta Campus Nurses
A robot obstacle course was just one of the many activities students participated in.

Ben Hill-Irwin Campus Nurses
A small replica of a DOT bridge was a popular event. Students, in teams of three or four, took the bridge apart and then put it back together. The teams for competing for fastest time.

Fitzgerald, GA - More than six hundred students from area middle schools and high schools descended on Wiregrass Georgia Technical College’s Ben Hill-Irwin Campus this past week. The students, their teachers, counselors, and administrators participated in the first annual Get Wired for a Career. The event featured more than 20 hands-on activities that showcased potential career fields.

Allied Health Event participants could be put in suits that simulate what it feels like as we age. The suit mimics issues such as arthritis so that healthcare students at Wiregrass can understand the issues their patients may be dealing with.

The activities were designed to get the students involved in some aspect of a career they could eventually aspire to. Business and Computer Science faculty created games using Microsoft Office software programs, a personal finance game called the Geek Is Right, and a robot obstacle course using television remotes programmed to control the robots. The Criminal Justice program used a pistol simulator, a mock crime scene, and demonstrations of tactical equipment to simulate scenarios one would find in a career in law enforcement. Students interested in industrial systems were “shocked” as they learned about the flow of electricity. They also had the opportunity to test their knowledge of industrial terminology during a jeopardy game complete with a buzzer for each participant built in the program. Carlton Cabot, welding instructor, and his college students spent several days welding small give-away items for each student out of metal. Participants were shown various types of welding equipment and safety procedures before getting the chance to weld one of the small give-away items themselves.

Students flowed through activities in every academic area of the college from health care related activities to early childhood care and education and automotive technology. Local businesses and organizations also participated in the day’s activities. The Fitzgerald Fire Department and Irwin EMS partnered with the Fire Science Program and demonstrated the use of equipment in both careers. A-Tech, a telecommunications company that employees several Wiregrass graduates demonstrated cabling techniques along with current telecommunication students and instructor Ira Smith. Other activities included team building events, a DOT bridge build, a red ribbon week table set up by Communities in Schools, and a bucket truck from Fitzgerald Utilities.

Students from Ben Hill Middle School, Fitzgerald High School, Irwin County High School, Wilcox County Middle School, Wilcox County High School, Coffee County Middle School, and Coffee County High School completed bingo cards as they moved through each activity, turning in their completed cards at the end of the day for a t-shirt. Wiregrass Student Leadership Council and Fitzgerald Communities in Schools provided lunch for all participants. Wiregrass will hold a Get Wired for a Career in Professional Services on November 14 on the Valdosta Campus, and a Get Wired for a Career event on the Coffee Campus on February 13, 2014. Students in grades 7th through 12th are encouraged to attend and homeschool students are welcome. For more information on these events, please contact Angela Hobby at 229-333-5365 or Brooke Jaramillo at 229-293-6163.