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Middle Schoolers Explore Careers During Visit Day

    by Emilie Jenson, Public Information Office
    Posted on 10/11/2023

Classes may not have been held for students at Iowa Central Community College on Wednesday October 11, but the campus was busy with activity as hundreds of young visitors gathered to get a firsthand look into the many careers and fields of study offered by Iowa Central.  

Students from Eagle Grove, Fort Dodge, Humboldt, Saint Paul Lutheran, Saint Edmond, Storm Lake and Webster City attended the Middle School Visit Day on campus, participating in hands on classroom activities and campus tours while getting a feel for a day in the life of a college student.

Students divided into groups and attended classroom sessions throughout the day in various career fields including nursing, medical laboratory technician, carpentry, welding, automotive technology, criminal justice, education, visual arts, and TV/Radio broadcasting. Each group met with instructors, had question and answer sessions and the chance to try out some of the skills in each career field.

Students visiting the Carpentry Department learned about the different jobs available in the field and how a carpentry degree can help with career advancement. Before moving on to their next session, they had some fun with a nail driving contest. In the welding department, students had the opportunity to learn first about welding safety and careers and welder salaries. They then got hands-on experience trying out full welding safety gear and making welds.

In the Bioscience and Health Sciences building, students visited the Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT) classroom where MLT Program Coordinator Shawna Schuler explained the role of an MLT and the various careers that can be pursued with the degree.

“You can work in a hospital, but with an MLT degree you can also work in veterinary labs, biodiesel and ethanol labs and even crime labs and in heath informatics,” said Schuler.

After hearing about the career field and the classes required to be in the MLT Program, the students viewed blood samples on slides and did blood typing before getting hands learning how to draw blood from a mannequin arm. Each student took a turn at finding a vein in the arm, applying the tourniquet, and placing a real needle – if they placed it correctly their “patient” would bleed water that had been dyed red and draw it into the syringe.

“That was pretty cool, finding the veins and learning the whole process of how drawing blood works,” said Gabriel Meja-Terry, a seventh grader from Storm Lake Middle School.

Across campus, the Applied Science and Technology Building was buzzing with activity as students visited the Radio and TV, Automotive, and Computer Integrated Technology programs. 

In the KICB studios, students had the opportunity to go live on the air between songs as TV and Radio Production Coordinator Nikki Rasmussen interviewed each of them about what they’d like to be when they graduate. In the CIT shop, instructors demonstrated how to use equipment such as the lathe and mill before each student tried out the machines firsthand.

“The drills were pretty fun to try,” said seventh-grader Jager Johnson.

Throughout the day, students also checked out smoke machines, thermal imaging, leak detectors and hybrid car batteries in the Automotive Technology shop, designed neurographic drawings in the Visual Arts Department and created their ideas of the perfect teacher in the Education Department.

After visiting each department, students toured campus and had lunch in the Career Education Building. An estimated 1,000 middle school students, staff and teachers attended the visit day from seven area schools.


Middle Schoolers Explore Careers During Visit Day

Iowa Central is awesome. There are personable teachers, a large campus feel, excellent music and drama departments, and the college is generous with scholarships. I’ve had some of the best experiences of my life here.

Anna Ingalls

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