OPINION: Sophomore Career Exploration day

A learning curve for the students and counselors


Colorado Mesa University seal

All sophomores of Grand Junction High School were taken away against their will  for a day at WCCC and CMU. 

The Sophomore Career day occurred on Tuesday, Jan. 10. The main goal of the event was to open student’s eyes to possibilities and to see potential career paths that they have available in high school and beyond.  Just like the Workforce Development day I think this is an amazing idea but similar to the Workforce Development day’s poor execution.

“Igniting the thoughts of sophomores in regards to their futures and possible careers is the ultimate goal of Sophomore Career Days,” said Lori Plantiko, GJHS counselor and organizer of the event.

My group was at Western Colorado Community College for half the day and Colorado Mesa University for the other half. And I must say we lucked out on this one being the first event. Because if I had to go to CMU first I would have been unexcited for the rest of the day

When it comes down to it, the Workforce Development day  was way more entertaining than this event. Where the Workforce day was entertaining at the beginning of the day and slowly dropped off I would have to say the same for Career Exploration day. But this type of drop can be compared to me going in head first to the Grand Canyon. 

I started the day off at WCCC. We then walked around and talked to teachers who taught the classes and they would explain what the classes were. I loved this part of the day. Simply because I got to meet new and interesting people and some classes I really want to sign up for. My friends had one problem with this part of the day though. We didn’t have enough time to listen to all of what the classes entail. After we were done with the classes we had to get stamps on a piece of paper. I wasn’t able to get all of the stamps required because of time. I was listening to WCCC people in which I was interested in. Instead of just going in and getting a stamp just to get a stamp like most of my peers. I really did think the WCCC tour was a great idea but it was just some poor execution.

“Our team continuously tries to improve this event. We know that things can always be improved.  We invite constructive feedback from students and teachers in an attempt to make it better.” Plantiko said. 

Another thing that was a little weird was the timing of the event. I understand that it was not the school’s decision but just getting back from break and getting to know new teachers was interrupted. After coming back from break It takes some time to get in the flow of school. It isn’t the best thing when that flow is interrupted almost immediately after a two week break.

After the beginning of the day I had an hour break where I would have to meet back in the courtyard at Noon to go over to CMU. We then walked all the way over to CMU where we then went into a room. This part of the day I can say by far was the worst. Our counselor then talked to us for two hours about stuff we already knew.  Even some of the really good kids I had in my class who normally participate and have good grades weren’t paying attention. The most fun I had was making Walter White in the game of life simulation. Another thing that I did not like about the day was why we were at CMU. We could have done the same thing in the library. Maybe the reason we went to CMU was for classroom space but it could have been done during advisory.

And I know I’m not the only one. When I asked all of my sophomore friends what they thought about this day all, of them said that this part of the day sucked.

Now how would I fix these problems? First thing is to have the event later than Christmas Break. Like maybe two weeks after we get back. So we can get back into the swing of things. Another thing is more time at WCCC. It was very clearly rushed and we only got the surface level of some classes. I would also change the CMU portion by getting rid of it. It serves no point, and – I can’t state this enough – was a waste of time.

The counseling team is excited to continue doing this day.  So many students have benefited from their WCCC courses and the college credit earned their” Plantiko said.