Hands-on career experience

Published 7:00 am Thursday, February 9, 2017

Back in my day, in the first decade of the 21st century, I didn’t have many high school classes that provided hands-on experiences for future careers.

The only personal involvement I had in grade school was sports, which is truly my passion.

But what about those people who don’t get excited when a 60-yard Hail Mary is tossed in the air while the clock ticks through the final seconds of the game?

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What led me to the beginning of my career should be available to every child in order to help them find their passion at an early age, so they have time to pursue it.

I played nearly every sport you can think of, heard from many “guest speakers” and also talked to people who have been in the business for an extensive amount of time.

That exposure helped me fall in love with sports, along with my many other learning experiences from coaches, my family and high school teachers.

Earlier this week, the crew of a rescue helicopter visited students in a health science class at Pearl River Central High School, providing them with a glimpse into a career that is not well known. When I think of healthcare, the first careers that come to mind are doctors and nurses, not an air ambulance paramedic. However, while seeing the students’ enthusiasm about the job, it rang a bell of when I was first introduced to sports journalism.

Young adults learn best with hands-on experiences; yet, they are not exposed to all the different venues they could pursue.

Teachers that demonstrate and show exactly what they are teaching helps students understand what they are learning and how it applies to the real world.

I was lucky because my career path was right in front of me the whole time, but for many other young adults, their passion is not that easy to find. But maybe Monday’s event will inspire this group of students to consider a new path in life. Who knows, maybe they will be the one that saves your life one day.