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800 Nacogdoches 8th Graders To Explore Careers At Hands-On Event At SFA


GATEWAY TO YOUR FUTURE – Deciding on a career is something all middle-school students are encouraged to do as they enter high school and many school districts conduct things like career fairs where different professions are presented. But this week some 800 eighth graders from the Nacogdoches Independent School district will experience a different approach to learning about careers at a three-day event that will take place at Stephen F. Austin State University.

“So Gateway to Your Future is a career exploration. This is actually a hands-on event where six careers will be offered, represented and the children will be able to pick two of the six so that they can spend a quality amount of time in that career exploration,” explained Erin Windham, Community Engagement Liaison for Nacogdoches ISD,

Erin Windham is Community Engagement Liaison for Nacogdoches ISD.
Courtesy: Nacogdoches ISD
Erin Windham is Community Engagement Liaison for Nacogdoches ISD.

Career choices include Electrician, Plumber, Pharmacy Tech, Network Technician, Automotive Tech, and Phlebotomist. Students will get opportunities to engage with those professionals who will show them how to perform certain tasks in their specific jobs.

“For the electrician they’ll actually wire a light bulb and then wire the switch and see if it works. For plumber, there’s actually sinks with and a tank of water. And they will really get to try the career,” Windham said.

Eighth graders from all over Nacogdoches county will be bussed to the SFA Student Center where the Gateway to Your Future event will take place in the Grand Ballroom. The three day event begins Wednesday, January 11th. Windham hopes to expand this event to help even more students in other East Texas counties.

“We’re really excited to see where this can go,” Windham said. “800 students is a lot but there’s tens of thousands who need it in deep East Texas so we’re excited to just get the ball rolling.”

If you’d like to learn more about Gateway To Your Future Career event go to Nacogdoches Chamber’s website: www.nacogdoches.org/news/5243.

Sponsors for the event include SFA’s Center for Applied Research and Rural Innovation, The Charles and Lois Marie Bright Foundation, Better Together Organization, Texas Workforce Solutions, and the Nacogdoches Economic Development Corporation, and Nacogdoches ISD.