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H.Y.P.E. Career Expo introduces over a thousand students to future opportunities

Posted at 11:59 AM, Mar 01, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-01 12:59:18-05

BRYAN, Texas — Over one thousand high school students participated in the 11th Annual Career Exploration,H.Y.P.E.

HYPE, helping youth prepare for employment, invited high school juniors and seniors across the Brazos Valley to explore future career opportunities, locally and beyond.

“Regardless of whether you’re going straight to a four year or two year or straight to work, you need to have an idea of what you want to go to, what your options are as far as occupations,” said Vonda Morrison, Workforce Board Program Manager.

Cardiss Taylor and Jalayha Medearis are both local seniors.

Taylor wants to major in engineering at Texas A&M and Medearis wants to study nursing at Texas State.

“I’m happy to be here because you get to look at all the job opportunities,” said Cardiss Taylor, senior.

“I’m happy to be here because it gives me a lot of opportunities on different jobs that I can pursue,” said Jalayha Medearis, senior.

Students also had the opportunity to embark on the U.S. Navy Seal's, the Nimitz, a state-of-the-art mobile VR simulation experience.

“We were actually given the great opportunity today to actually present to over 14 schools like the VR experience,” said Petty Officer Cory Johnson, U.S. Navy. “We only have one of these out of the entire country and we were given the privilege to come out here and share to the people of the Brazos Valley.”

“We have over 14 schools this year and we have over 1,000 kids at the HYPE career expo,” said Morrison. “Each of the aisles is an occupation. We have energy, education, advanced manufacturing, and technology.”

The U.S. Navy informed students of post-graduation opportunities.

“We were able to give them VR experience, tell them about the Navy, and spread the NAVY awareness,” said Officer Johnson. “You know the closest water to us is going to be Galveston, over 100 miles away. A lot of people out here have never seen a ship, had never even been to the water, never left Bryan/College Station.”

Jonathan Avendano is a senior at rudder high school.

He’s interested in joining Bryan Fire after he graduates.

“I’m excited because I knew Bryan Fire Department was going to be here,” said Johnathan Avendano, Rudder High School senior. “That’s my main goal is Bryan Fire Department. It’s something I’ve been looking forward to.”

“That’s what they were doing for me,” said Avendano. “They are definitely giving me a lot of options on how to proceed through to make it look better for whenever I am ready to go to Bryan Fire Department after I graduate.”

Morrison with workforce solutions says it’s all about students getting to explore what’s out there.

“This gives you the opportunity to explore some options before you actually get to college or once you get there to make your mind up on what your occupation is going to be for your life,” said Morrison.

For juniors and seniors still figuring out, career expos like this help.

“I’m excited to be here because I’m not really sure what I want to do, and I feel like you can really learn about different opportunities to do here,” said Daisy Martinez, Rudder High School senior.

“That’s our role here, to help them to find, to get an insight into what occupation they think they want to go into,” said Morrison.