There was a common message at Zebulon Middle School’s Career Day on Tuesday, despite the fact that all four guest speakers represented different occupations.
A massage therapist, an attorney, a real estate agent and a pastor all managed to get the point across to a crowd of eighth-graders that the decisions the rising adults make right now will have lasting effects on their futures.
Much of the talk revolved around being responsible, being of good character and achieving goals. After hearing from the speakers, the students were given the chance to question each guest on their line of work.
“It was a good interactive opportunity,” said eighth-grader Mia Foster. “The many different professions deal with different levels of education, but they all were willing to persevere. That tells me to not give up and persevere.”
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Sharon Russo of Zebulon Massage spoke on her qualifications, the demands of her job and how her hands-on work allows her to work only so long at a time. She encouraged the students to take care of their bodies today, witnessing to what a lack of healthy decisions can lead to down the road.
Rhonda Raney, an attorney with Mediation Solutions and adjunct professor at N.C. Central University, spoke about being an upstanding person and how important that is in the professional world.
Foster took the chance to pick the lawyer’s mind on the notion of a proposed 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, a topic ZMS eighth-graders have explored in recent years. The proposal basically calls for legislators to adhere equally to laws they create that apply to citizens.
Raney kept true to her occupation and flipped the question back to Foster, asking what she thinks about the proposed amendment.
“I think it’s good because I think equality is the way of life,” Foster replied. “Challenges with that is that obviously Congress won’t pass the law because that’s putting a limit on them. So what would have to happen is states would have to pass the law.”
Amanda Bunch, a real estate agent with Keller Williams, used her time to talk about the importance of building relationships and knowing the customers in her field. She made the connection that setting goals and being self motivated are constant aspects of her job that result in a better payday, much like a student studying hard and being rewarded at test time.
Rev. Alonza Fullwood, pastor at Riley Hill Baptist Church and adjunct professor at Shaw University, shared his educational background before doing what preachers do best – leaving the audience with something to contemplate.
Fullwood urged the students not to daydream; to do their dreaming at night because there’s too much to do during the day.
“Success is not by chance, nor is it an accident,” Fullwood said. “You don’t just wake up and run into success in the morning. You have to work for it. ... Set your GPS and your GPA. If you want to go to New York, that’s fine. The next question is how do I get there, what steps do I need to take, and what do I want to do there when I arrive?”