Herkimer BOCES nursing Career Fair now provides opportunities for high-school, adult students
May 30, 2019
Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Health Science Careers students pose for a photo outside the building after attending the Herkimer BOCES Adult Practical Nursing Program 2019 Career Fair at the Remington Educational Complex in Ilion. This was the first year the high-school students were included in the fair.
ILION – The recent Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Adult Practical Nursing Program 2019 Career Fair included high-school students in the Herkimer BOCES Health Science Careers program for the first time.
The event annually provides adult students studying to become licensed practical nurses with a chance to meet local employers and colleges. This time, the Herkimer BOCES Career and Technical Education high-schoolers also were able to network with the guests.
“It was good to expand it to include the Health Science Careers students,” Herkimer BOCES Adult Practical Nursing Program Coordinator Sara Nicolette said. “I think they were amazed at the opportunities that were here.”
The Career Fair took place on May 15 in the nursing program’s space at the Remington Educational Complex in Ilion. Officials attended from two colleges and about 25 local healthcare facilities. Combined, the companies represented about 200 nursing job openings, Nicolette said.
To prepare the Health Science Careers students for their first time attending the Career Fair, Health Science Careers instructor Christe Zambri, teaching assistant Vicky Hauser and English teacher Sarah Jewett assisted students with resumes, cover letters and professional skills such as proper workplace attire.
Because the Career Fair takes place during the afternoon when juniors attend CTE programs at Herkimer BOCES, most of the Health Science Careers students who attended were juniors, but some seniors were able to attend as well.
Health Science Careers juniors Ashley Worden and Zackery Geyer, both of Little Falls City School District, said they benefited from the experience.
“I got a lot of opportunities to see what I can do in this field,” Worden said.
Both Worden and Geyer said their longer-term goals include becoming registered nurses, and the Career Fair helped them discover possible options for working along the way.
“I liked it because it gives me opportunities I didn’t know were there and different things I could do in this field,” Geyer said.
Kim Maneen, director of human resources at The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Mohawk Valley, attended the Career Fair with recruiter Brittani Edwards to recruit LPNs and certified nursing assistants. Health Science Careers students can become CNAs during their time in the BOCES program.
“That’s actually an added bonus this year,” Maneen said, of the high-school students attending the event for the first time.
Maneen said the Career Fair is helpful for employers as well.
“There’s definitely a nursing shortage, so we always look forward to this,” she said.
Nicolette said the fair has grown every year and shows the high demand for qualified LPNs – not just in nursing homes.
“There are so many more options, and they’re all hiring for LPNs,” Nicolette said.
Jace LaPuma, human resources coordinator for the Rescue Mission of Utica, attended the fair looking to fill open full-time and part-time LPN positions and other jobs.
“I think it was excellent – especially because there’s such a need in the area for LPNs,” he said. “I definitely see it in the field that it’s needed, and good ones are needed.”
The Herkimer BOCES Adult Practical Nursing Program provides three different programs local adults can apply to attend: a full-time program, a part-time program that takes place during the day and a part-time program that takes place in the evening.
Herkimer BOCES Adult Practical Nursing students Miranda Bailey and Robert Bacon, each of Ilion, said they appreciated the fair.
“I think it’s awesome to have all these places in one location for all of us to see at once,” Bailey said.
There were more healthcare facilities offering opportunities than they expected, they said.
“It makes it a lot easier – everything in one place,” Bacon said.
Bailey and Bacon are both in the LPN part-time program that takes place in the evening. Herkimer BOCES also offers a part-time program that takes place during the day and a full-time program.
The full-time program lasts 12 months, and the next class begins July 1, with recruitment and admission ending on June 10. The part-time programs run for a total of 20 months of the course of two 10-month school years. The next part-time programs classes begin on Sept. 4, with recruitment ending on Aug. 12.
For more information on the programs, visit www.herkimer-boces.org/LPN. There also will be an adult nursing open house from 7-8:30 p.m. on Monday, June 10, at the Remington Educational Complex in Ilion.
Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Adult Practical Nursing Program students meet with representatives from local healthcare facilities during the program’s 2019 Career Fair at the Remington Educational Complex in Ilion. For more info about the nursing program, visit www.herkimer-boces.org/LPN.