Annual career fair provides many career choices
- Katie Doke Sawatzky | May 18, 2017
Around 1,400 high-school students made their way through a sea of booths in Regina’s EventPlex at Evraz Place on May 16. The students learned about different career and education paths from more than 60 exhibitors at the Stepping Stones Career Fair.
The exhibitors included representatives from the trades, universities and colleges, resource corporations, financial institutions, and public service organizations in the province. Schools with Indigenous students are invited to attend there is usually a high attendance from surrounding rural areas and First Nations.
Marissa Thomson, a Grade 12 student from Carry the Kettle First Nation, visited the RCMP booth, the firefighters, and the nursing booth. She wants to be a registered nurse after she graduates.
“It’s just helping people and being in the hospital seems exciting,” she said.
Thomson says the fair is important because it educates students about what’s out there.
Kail Lerat, who is from Ochapowace Nation, said the fair was awesome.
“It’s a great way for people to get a better idea of what they want to do after high school,” he said. “It’s important for me because I think about my future a lot.”
Lerat checked out the RCMP booth because he wants to be an RCMP officer after high school.
“Because I like helping, you know, making the world a better place,” he said.
Organizers handed out bingo cards with questions for the students to ask at each table. The exhibitors stamped the bingo cards, which the students could then enter in a draw for prizes. The cards were not only fun for the kids but also helpful for the presenters.
“Sometimes they’re a little bit intimidated so they can just look at the card and go, ‘Oh, how do I apply?’ and we’ll start talking and it actually leads to more questions,” said Corporal Angela Desjarlais with the Regina Police Service.
For Desjarlais, the fair is important to the RPS because it allows students to see that officers are approachable.
“We want people to be able to look past [our uniforms] and know that we’re human beings and that we care about what they have to say,” she said. “Anyone can do this job. If you care about the community, if you care about the city you live in, this is a job for anybody.”
There were other interactive activities for students to participate in. Many took to hammering nails into a makeshift wall put together by Construction Careers. Others had their hair braided by stylists from Avant-Garde Beauty College.
While the Stepping Stones Career Fair has been held in different places through the years, event organizer Dean Bigknife estimates that 2017 marks the 15th year the Fair has taken place. The day went smoothly with only one minor thing forgotten.
“For example, our exhibitors, they talk so much they’re thirsty so we have to give them water…but overall I think everything’s going good,” he said.
The Fair is organized by volunteer representatives from File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council, University of Regina, and Silver Sage Housing Corporation.