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During School Board Recognition Month this October, we would like to thank the members of the Herkimer BOCES Board of Education for their service and all that they do for BOCES and our students! Thank you to: Daniel LaLonde, Thomas Shypski, Jack Bono, Ronald Loiacono, Janine Lynch, William Miller, James Schmid, Michelle Szarek, Linda Tharp and Daniel Voce!
Herkimer BOCES VP-TECH students
receive advice from career panel

Oct. 3, 2017




Career panel speaks to VP-TECH students
Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students listen to a career panel on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES. To view more photos, find Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HerkimerBOCES.



HERKIMER – M&T Bank Vice President of Business Banking Alicia Brockway told Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students during a career panel that the key to a successful career can be figuring out what you enjoy doing.

“Once you find out what you love to do, you’re going to do very well with it,” she said.

Brockway, however, said it’s OK to not know yet what you want to do and that she didn’t know in high school.

“As long as you’re trying different things to figure it out, you’ll get there,” she said.

The career panel for Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES VP-TECH students took place on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES. The other panel members were David Paciello, broker/owner of One Realty Partners; Daniel Brockway, staff accountant at Peters and Associates; Bill Kardas, WKTV meteorologist, and Veronica Coletti, an attorney at the Oneida County Public Defender’s Office.

VP-TECH business teacher Andrew Carpenter came up with the idea for the career panel and took the lead on it, so it was awesome to have a staff member recognize a need and step up to make an event like this happen for students, VP-TECH Principal Brittany DerCola said.

“The real-world connections are key,” DerCola said. “That’s what keeps our students engaged and keeps them moving.”

VP-TECH students spend four to six years in the program – leaving it with a Regents diploma, an associate degree in quality assurance from Herkimer College, a certification in advanced manufacturing and connections with local businesses.

Carpenter said he knows that the careers of the panel members aren’t what many of the VP-TECH students are planning to pursue, but he wanted the students to learn about how it can help to hear advice and network with people from various industries.

“I just wanted them to understand that they might know people that can push them in the right direction,” he said.

Plus, it’s always possible that a student attending the career panel could be inspired to pursue a career path of similar to one of the presenters, Carpenter said.

“I guess that’s the goal: To keep your options open because you never know where you’ll fall,” he said.

Student questions

There were two sessions of the panel discussion – one for VP-TECH freshmen and sophomores, and one for juniors. Both sessions opened with brief introductions by the panel members, followed by questions.

VP-TECH students asked many questions such as whether knowing the right people played a role in the panelists’ careers, what the biggest concerns are at their jobs, what the biggest career risk they took was, what originally interested them in their careers, what training was required and if there was ever a time when they didn’t think they would accomplish their career goals.

One student’s question about how technology such as smartphones have affected the panelists’ industries and could lead to a decline of jobs in those fields, sparked an in-depth discussion.

 The panelists agreed that technology is affecting all career fields and in some cases reducing the number of jobs available, but it also creates opportunities.

“There are so many things that are changing with technology out there that you can be creating your own jobs,” Alicia Brockway said.

In the banking industry, you can deposit a check using a smartphone, but customer service will be what keeps jobs secure because there will always be questions that aren’t as straight forward as what an app can answers, Alicia Brockway said.

“No matter what, I think that face-to-face interaction will always be there,” she said.

Daniel Brockway agreed that although technology such as for filing taxes has affected the accounting industry, there will still be a need for jobs.

“That knowledge always has to be there to back up that software and that program,” he said.

Kardas had also previously mentioned that weather apps on smartphones impact people’s need for local weather news.

“In my field, what we’re trying to compete against is the phone,” he said.

The difference, however, comes during major weather events when meteorologists can quickly provide specific, local information, Kardas said.

Career advice

Kardas told students about his background, how a tornado near his home as a child sparked his interest in meteorology and how the field requires a lot of science, calculus and a four-year college degree. He said his career choice was about doing something he enjoys.

“If you can find something that you like and you can find a way to pursue it, go for it,” he said.

He also offered some insights into what it’s like to be a meteorologist in broadcasting – such as the unusual hours that come with the job, especially at first, and how it feels to discuss the weather by speaking to a camera.

“You’re on television talking to thousands of people, but in your actual work environment, you’re in a studio with very few people,” he said.

Paciello said he recommends that students either go into the technology field or pursue trades work such as being a plumber, electrician, carpenter or welder.

“You don’t have to go high tech,” he said. “You can also do these things because there are great jobs out there.”

Paciello said it’s important to work hard and develop skills for any career students pursue.

“When you get into whatever industry you’re interested in, you have to set yourself apart from your competition,” he said. “You’re not just going to fall into a great career.”

Paciello offered other advice such as establishing a support system, finding a mentor and reading job descriptions for positions they’re interested in and honing in on those skills. He also offered encouragement that students will be able to figure out what they want to do.

“You’re going to just have to try a few different things,” he said.

‘Doing the work’

Coletti said that courses such as English and history and skills such as writing and public speaking help with her job. If students enjoy interacting with others, it’s a good field to pursue, she said.

“It’s very people-oriented,” she said.

One student asked her how hard it was to pass law school. She said anyone can do it by studying and putting in the effort.

“I think it’s a matter of putting your mind to it and doing the work,” she said.

Coletti said her background includes working in human resources, and networking helped lead to her current job, which she prefers.

“With this, I feel like I have a role in helping people and helping families,” she said.

Coletti recommended that to find career success students should work hard, network and participate in internships.

“I think it’s finding what works for you, then committing to it and working hard to reach that goal,” she said.

Daniel Brockway said he didn’t know in high school what he wanted to do, but that it’s OK to not know at that point. He loves numbers and is good at math, so the accounting field ended up being the right choice for him, he said.

Career growth often requires trying new things, he said.

“It’s all about taking a leap of faith and getting out of your comfort zone,” he said.

In response to a student question about whether panelists work in teams – as is the focus at VP-TECH – or alone, Daniel Brockway spoke about the importance of learning to work with others.

“I think, with everything, you’re always going to work with somebody,” he said. “Any field, you always have to have teamwork.”

Daniel Brockway also offered advice to students that they will have to work hard for their careers.

“It’s not easy,” he said, “but it’s definitely worth it.”




Career panelists talk to VP-TECH students
A career panel speaks to Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES. From left: Veronica Coletti, an attorney for the Oneida County Public Defender’s Office; Bill Kardas, WKTV meteorologist; Alicia Brockway, M&T Bank vice president of business banking; Daniel Brockway, staff accountant at Peters and Associates, and David Paciello, broker/owner of One Realty Partners.


Veronica Coletti speaks to VP-TECH students
Veronica Coletti, an attorney for the Oneida County Public Defender’s Office, speaks to Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students during a career panel on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES.


Bill Kardas speaks to VP-TECH students
WKTV meteorologist Bill Kardas speaks to Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students during a career panel on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES.


Alicia Brockway speaks to VP-TECH students
M&T Bank Vice President of Business Banking Alicia Brockway speaks to Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students during a career panel on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES.


Daniel Brockway speaks to VP-TECH students
Daniel Brockway, staff accountant at Peters and Associates, speaks to Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students during a career panel on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES.Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES School To Careers program.


David Paciello speaks to VP-TECH students
David Paciello, broker/owner of One Realty Partners, speaks to Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Valley Pathways in Technology Early College High School students during a career panel on Monday, Oct. 2, at Herkimer BOCES.





 
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