Career Exploration Day Connected Business with Future Workforce

By Shelly O’Quinn
Workforce Development Manager, Greater Spokane Inc.

Shelly O'QuinnWhat do CNC Machinists, Aerospace Engineers, Radiology Technologists, and Architects all have in common?  They were all careers represented at Greater Spokane Incorporated’s Career Exploration Day on March 10, 2010. 

After months of preparation and countless phone calls and emails to schools and businesses the big day arrived.  No pressure…only 1400+ students from as far away as Newport, Rosalia and Clark Fork, Idaho, were signed up to arrive at the National Guard Readiness Center throughout the day.  These 7th – 12th graders were coming to learn about the careers and education programs in the Spokane Region.

Fifty businesses (and their brave employees) representing Health Care, Manufacturing, Business & Professional Services, Aerospace and Tourism and Hospitality, were ready to provide hands-on, interactive displays to encourage students to think outside the box when it comes to choosing a career.

“I enjoyed connecting with students to get them excited about web design and game development,” commented Tyler Lafferty, Owner, Seven2. “Some students had very poignant questions about how to move forward in our field and I love to think I could give them just a little direction for their future.”

Our students are our future leaders, business owners and employees.  Introducing them to careers and training programs in our region ensures that we will have a workforce prepared to meet the needs of current and future employers.  A skilled workforce is essential for attracting and retaining businesses in our community and for overall economic growth in our region.

If you are interested in sharing jobs in your industry with students in our region, please contact me at


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