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Dorchester residents participate in career exploration workshop

Friday, April 15, 2005


Participants included (seated, foreground, left to right) Veleka Cooper, Tanya Creekmore, Kissondrah Rideout, and (background) Jermeshia Stanley. 

CAMBRIDGE – People don’t need to look for jobs as much as they should plan for careers, according to Chesapeake College Director of Admissions Kathy Petrichenko.

"The people who enjoy the most professional success are usually those people who take the time to prepare for a career," said Petrichenko. "That involves a lot of activities – self-assessment, information-gathering about careers, development of job-seeking skills, and exploring educational requirement for the careers that interest you."

That’s just what nine clients of the Dorchester Office of the Department of Social Services did at a recent Career Exploration Workshop at the Chesapeake College Cambridge Center. The college and the Department of Social Services developed the event to help local residents get into the career-planning mode.

The participants said the event was extremely valuable.

"I found looking at different job options very helpful," said Jermeshia Stanley, one of the workshop participants. "I will use this information to help me decide on courses to take next fall."

Participants took the Career Keys interest test and discussed their individual results with Petrichenko and Dana Bowser, the college’s director of multicultural affairs. Services available to the students through Chesapeake College were also reviewed, according to Petrichenko, including financial aid and assistance from the local Workforce Investment Board.

"The most satisfying thing was to see people who were so interested and engaged in the workshop," said Petrichenko. "The participants took career interest tests, then lined up their interests with job opportunities and program majors at the college."

"The most important thing we did was show them that college was available to them," said Bowser. "We kind of opened the door and now they can peek through and see the opportunities that await them."

Barbara Thomas, a work opportunity case manager with DSS, said the workshop provided her clients with a unique opportunity.

"They’ve been given a lot of information they may not have otherwise received at one time. Now we’re trying to eliminate any barriers to college attendance that may exist," said Thomas, who indicated clients are preparing to take the GED and complete other pre-college preparations.

"Petrichenko said the program participants will take Chesapeake’s Academic Skills Assesment in May and then register for fall classes.

Caption: Kathy Petrichenko, Chesapeake College’s director of admissions, oversees the recent Career Exploration Workshop for Dorchester County residents, which took place at the Chesapeake College Cambridge Center on Race Street. Participants included (seated, foreground, left to right) Veleka Cooper, Tanya Creekmore, Kissondrah Rideout, and (background) Jermeshia Stanley.

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