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Students look at 'real world' employment via Gateway

Second of two parts

Junior Isabella Willis didn't know that her love of writing could be turned into a career until she took a journalism class at Gateway Success Center.

After accessing the OKCareerGuide.com website to assess her skills and interests and then taking the class to learn about the field, the district helped set up an internship at the Lawton Public Schools' Communication Department, which is giving her a "real world" look at what it takes to be a journalist.

Fellow Gateway junior Madison Glenn, interested in becoming a phlebotomist before becoming a nurse and then a doctor, is now volunteering at the Oklahoma Blood Institute and getting class credit thanks to discussions between OBI and Gateway's counselors and staff. Glenn knows about the field because her mother and other family members work in that field.

At MacArthur High, senior Karmari Willis (no relation to Isabella), who wants to be a writer, and ninth-grader Kenya Nash, who is thinking of becoming an architect, finished teacher Gregory Ford's one-semester career exploration class in December. They used the OKCareerGuide to help build their Individual Career Academic Plan (ICAP) and to learn job possibilities, how to conduct themselves at work and about resources available.

Thanks to assessing their skills and interests and then gaining real world experiences, Isabella Willis and Glenn will have a good insight into their possible career fields before they enter those fields, said Mark Mattingly, LPS Student Services executive director.

By building their ICAP and using the website, Kamari Willis and Nash "matched their interests with possible careers," Ford said. "By having them research and discover that it take to get (to a possible career) and what the entry requirements are, helps."

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