PHOTO: Spring Hill High School students learning the basics of interviewing on Wednesday morning // Photo by Alexander Willis
By ALEXANDER WILLIS
Spring Hill High School’s new Workforce Academy, which held its first weekly class in mid-October, is set on equipping students with the knowledge and know how required to attain, maintain, and excel at any job in the workforce.
“We can’t assume that their family has [the] appropriate skills,” said Angie Parks, senior vice president at Randstaad and an instructor at the Workforce Academy. “Unemployment is so low, and we need people. [In] manufacturing, the promoters need people, the suppliers need people, so we can’t wait for folks to come to us anymore. We have to start educating at an earlier level to ensure that they have the tools to understand what the market’s demanding.”
The course is set over a period of eight weeks, and goes into great detail on everything from proper resume-making, to communication skills.
Wednesday’s class saw students learn the basics of interviewing: proper body language, what to research before the interview, what questions to ask, and the age-old mystery of what to say when asked what your weaknesses are.
Instructors from Randstaad, Parks and Tracy Robinson, also asked students to participate in mock interviews, rounding out the lesson through giving them both useful information and experience.
“[We want] to make it much simpler for them to go to work and have a great job,” Parks said. “There are great jobs out there right now, with great pay. We’ve got jobs that these kids can go into that are $11 to $16 an hour with great benefits. They won’t do that if they don’t know.”
Currently, the program is partnered with two companies: General Motors and Randstaad, which both have representatives acting as instructors. The two companies are also currently in talks to potentially implement a path to internships for students who complete the Workforce Academy.
Last week, Maury County Public Schools’ Superintendent Chris Marczak urged more local businesses to volunteer for the program, not only for their own benefit, but for the students.
The academy is open to juniors and seniors, and takes place in between two class periods, as to not have students miss one entire class.
Businesses interested in sponsoring the program are encouraged to contact Superintendent Chris Marczak via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.