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Friday, March 11, 2022


All this week, the Senior Class at Bishop McGuinness has been participating in Winterim.

Winterim is a comprehensive study of seniors’ interests and career opportunities. Each of the seniors shadow two career professionals for 30 hours. The students begin in the fall by completing research about careers of interest, writing business letters to potential professionals to shadow, learning basic professional etiquette, and participate in  Zoom interviews with the professionals. And then after the week of shadowing, the students give a presentation to a panel of faculty members detailing what they learned. 

Sarah has decided that she wants to major in communications so she wanted to find two professionals with jobs that use a degree in communications.  

On Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday she shadowed  the Chief Development Officer at Victory Junction, Frances, who also happens to be her Girl Scout leader. Victory Junction is camp for seriously ill children that was created in memory of Adam Petty (son of Kyle Petty, grandson of Richard Petty) after he lost his life at the age of 19 in a racing accident.

Frances was so excited to have Sarah shadow her that she told her that anyone else that needed another shadow experience was also welcome.  So, two other students (who happen to be a couple of Sarah's best friends) joined her which made this even more fun for Sarah.

And since Victory Junction is in Randleman, and all three kids wanted to carpool together, Sarah spent three night at her friend's house which is 20 minutes closer toRandleman so that they could ride together and not have to leave quite as early each morning. So three consecutive sleepovers with her bestie and three consecutive early morning stops at Starbucks was icing on the cake for my coffee-loving girl.

She definitely enjoyed her time shadowing Frances. The days were busy and due to the nature of the job, each day was different. They took a tour of the awesome facilities (which had to be done on a golf cart because the property is so large), sat in on an executive board meeting, attended a fundraising meeting with Bikes for Kids Foundation that Victory Junction was hosting, met all of the leadership team (including the CEO and Director of Marketing and Communications) as well as Frances' staff and learned about what they all did on a daily basis. And she got to meet Nascar legend Richard Petty who happened to be attending the board meeting.

She had such a wonderful experienced and learned so much about how this particular non-profit operates and what she could do with a communications degree in a similar setting.  She also found it enjoyable because she understood a lot of the lingo because of her work with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society last year.

Yesterday and today, she is shadowing Jennifer, the Director of Brand Strategy and Insight at The Variable.  The Variable is an innovation and advertising firm.  And from talking with Sarah last night, it sounds like established companies come to them in need of new and innovative products and the Variable creates and designs these products for the company and then advertise the new product once it is ready for the consumer.  

She sat in on meetings yesterday talking about a new grill concept for Char-Grill. She also met with different people that work with the Directory of Brand Strategy and learned about their jobs.  Sarah was first introduced to her last year at Bishop's Career Day.  She came home that day extremely excited about Jennifer's presentation in particular. So when it was time to start reaching out to people who would allow her to shadow them, Sarah immediately thought of her.   I can't wait to hear what she did today!

Sarah spent much of last year concerned because she didn't know what she wanted to study in college.  But after spending the week with two very strong and very talented women with communications degrees, she is excited for college and what comes after!


Busy Bee Suz said...

What an amazing thing the school is doing for these kids.
HOW exciting to shadow someone who has the possible career you're interested in? SO COOL.
Sounds like a win-win for Sarah: Friends, Goals, Coffee, etc...

Pat Birnie said...

I love this so much. What a great opportunity for the students to be exposed to such a variety of businesses, non-profit etc.. This is true education.

Mari said...

Winterim sounds like a great idea with such benefits to the students!

Laura Pearl said...

Wow, if only all kids could do this before college! What a great program.

Colleen said...

Now THIS is education! I wish my kids school had a program like this, wow!

Ernie said...

Wow, this is so impressive. I wish I'd done something like this. What a wonderful concept. Such a service to the kids. Wishing my kids' school did something similar. Managing to incorporate a sleepover, well - it just doesn't get much better.