As seen on:
By Lara Bricker
Posted Apr 7, 2018 at 4:50 PM
The article below was published by Seacoastonline.com on April 7, 2018
and can be viewed on the Seacoast Online website by clicking here.
EXETER -- As principal of Seacoast School of Technology, Margaret Callahan knows local businesses are eager to hire students from the school. And she’s been working hard to spread the word.
Callahan has been organizing regular industry tours, during which she invites guidance counselors, school administrators, staff and local school board members, to board a bus and visit nearby businesses that have relationships with the school.
Guests on the tours hear firsthand from those businesses about their desire to hire students, during school and after graduation. Many will train students on the job, then hire them permanently, with a number offering tuition reimbursement, health insurance, vacation time and other perks such as on-site gym memberships.
The Seacoast School of Technology, or SST, has more than 700 students from six school districts and 19 towns. Students can enroll in 12 different programs such as automotive technology, biomedical science and technology, digital media arts and culinary arts, with some offering college credit and valuable industry certifications.
“They get here and they’re finally doing what they’re interested in and they’re in a class with kids who are exactly like them,” Callahan said. “Whether they’re the engineering kid or the culinary student who loves to cook. It’s like they’re among their own people.”
Tours have included local businesses such as Lindt and Sprungli, Highliner Foods, Palmer and Sicard, McFarland Ford, the Exeter Inn, and Riverwoods.
“We just see so many students go to college, don’t know what they’re going for, come out of college still unsure and have debt,” Callahan said. “So many of these local industries right in town will hire people full time, with incredible benefits, and pay for college.”
While high school students may be more inclined to get a lower paying job at a coffee shop or fast food restaurant, Callahan says they may be missing the opportunity to find a potential career.
Guests on the March 30 tour visited Riverwoods in Exeter, a continuing care community where jobs include everything from dining room servers, to nursing, to grounds and maintenance to marketing, according to Gina Dickenson, director of human resources at Riverwoods.