OBHS Career Awareness Day Helps 8th Graders Find their Path
Oyster Bay High School eighth graders interviewed professionals in various fields and gained first-hand knowledge of possible career paths during the district’s annual Career Awareness Day.
Set up in the high school gym, students met in small groups and had six minutes to ask questions of each professional, with the goal of interviewing about 15 professionals from different fields. They then had the opportunity to go back and ask more in-depth questions of one or two professionals in the careers that they found most interesting.
“Everyone has a story to tell,” said Mr. Joseph Pesqueira, K-12 Social Studies Supervisor and coordinator of the event. “This is an opportunity for students to learn about careers they may have never considered before and to tighten their focus on their educational goals and objectives.”
For months leading up to the event, students researched careers in their home and careers class, under the guidance of home and careers teacher Ms. Antonia Woodman. Students chose a career they wanted to explore and developed a written report that described the profession, the educational requirements, the salary, the job outlook, similar professions, and more. The students then designed T-shirts with graphics and information about their chosen profession and wore them on Career Awareness Day.
With a Career Awareness Day booklet in hand, students wrote down who they interviewed, their job title, what they do in a typical day and what education is needed. They also took notes on what school activities and courses the professionals recommended and what they liked or disliked about their job. After the students were finished with the interviews, they were asked to write a short reflection about the event.
Eighth-grader Jonida Konjufca, who aspires to be a lawyer, said it was a good opportunity to learn about different professions and what inspired the professionals to do them.
Nathaniel Yee, who is thinking about becoming a dermatologist, said the event gave him more insight about different careers and the education and training it takes to succeed. “Something that stood out to me is that it takes about 13 years of education to be an orthodontist,” he said.
Classmate Rafaela Godoy said she appreciated the advice she received from police officers and firefighters because she is considering those two fields, while Jack Hardiman, who went into the event focused on the career of financial advisor, said, “When walking around I expanded my viewpoint on all these different jobs, like firefighter and naturalist, and now I have a tougher decision to make.”
Mr. Pesqueira expressed his thanks to the professionals for taking time from their schedules to participate in the event. He also thanked the Board of Education and administration, Ms. Woodman for guiding students on their career paths, and the custodial team and volunteers for making the event a success.
The Career Day participants included: Ms. Alicia Battinelli, Advertising Director at Hofstra University, Mr. John Brush and Ms. Victoria Wink, physical education teachers, Oyster Bay High School; Ms. Pat Cohen, Naturalist, Outdoor & Environmental Education for Nassau BOCES; Mr. Benjamin Costanzo, musician, Ms. Melanie Derschowitz, Collections Manager for Oyster Bay Historical Society, Mr. John Feter, Park Ranger for Sagamore Hill National Park, Ms. Joelle Forte, national figure skating competitor and coach, Mr. Stephen Gorchov, Assistant Director of Athletic Communications for Hofstra University, Mr. Michael Goudket, educator at Raynham Hall Museum, Mr. Neil Heffernan, Project Manager for School Construction Consultants, Ms. Betsy Isley, Community Volunteer Ambassador for Sagamore Hill National Park, Mr. John Jarvis, firefighter with the East Norwich Fire Department, Ms. Tricia Martorella and Ms. Theresa Kelly, registered nurses at St. Francis Hospital; Leg. Joshua Lafazan, Legislator for the 18th District, Nassau County; Mr. Patrick Lough, financial advisor, Charter Financial Planning; Mr. Jorge Madden, Training Program Director at Oakcliff Sailing, Mr. Matthew McCartin, police officer,Nassau County Police Department; Ms. Dina Miller, President-Eastern District Chapter, Federal Bar Association; Mr. Tony Miraglia, Vice President/Director of Sales, Clear Channel Radio Sales;Dr. Zohreh Rasouli, orthodontist, Oyster Bay Orthodontics; Dr. Cathy Roncskevitz, veterinarian, Station Plaza Veterinary Group; Mr. Jesse Schenker, Executive Chef, 2 Spring Restaurant; Ms. Denice Evans-Sheppard, Director, Oyster Bay Historical Society; and Mr. Christopher Weber, librarian, Oyster Bay High School.
Community members shared their advice about their professions with Oyster Bay High School eighth graders during the Career Awareness Day. Pictured with them, top left, are Social Studies Supervisor Mr. Joseph Pesqueira and home and careers teacher Ms. Antonia Woodman.
Students, above and below, show the front and back of the T-shirts they designed after researching careers.
Students make their way around the gym to speak with different professionals.
Mr. Michael Goudket, an educator at Raynham Hall Museum, dressed the part for students.
Students learn how to take their blood pressure from nurses Ms. Theresa Kelly and Ms. Tricia Martorella from St. Francis Hospital.
Leg. Joshua Lafazan, Legislator for the 18th District, Nassau County, speaks to students about public office.
Ms. Pat Cohen, a naturalist for Outdoor & Environmental Education at Nassau BOCES enlightens students about her occupation.
Students listen to veterinarian Dr. Dr. Cathy Roncskevitz.
Students hand in completed Career Awareness Day interview booklets to home and careers teacher Ms. Antonia Woodman.