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A Day in the Life of... 
By Naiesha Thobe
Teen Scribe

Have you ever looked at the profession that you're in and wondered 'Well, how did I get here? This job is horrendous.' Or are you on the other end of the spectrum and enjoy your job thoroughly? Looking back, is this the job that you wanted all your life, or is it just something else to struggle through? By high school, a person should have an idea of the profession that they want to go into. That person will take classes according to his/her preferences, and later move onto college to continue to seek out knowledge necessary to meet their dream. However, as a student in high school myself, I can truthfully say that not all material can be learned through the books. Sometimes, it's necessary for a little hands-on assignment.

This is where the Greenville High School's Career Mentorship Program becomes a big help. This is a program that is generally offered to Juniors and Seniors, where they can shadow individuals in the field in which they have interests. The student will follow his/her mentor(s) around their job atmosphere, learning the tools of the trade for that occupation in particular. They have the opportunity not only to experience first hand what happens daily in that profession, but also to ask any questions that may pique their interest.

The Mentorship Program is completely free of charge and offers two sessions: once during the school year and once during the summer break, so people with limited time have more availability to this experience. Students spend 12-16 hours with their mentor(s) on a normal basis. These hours are split between two placements; this can be spent all at one site, or split between two sites or two career fields.

Personally, the Career Mentorship Program (CMP) is one of the most beneficial activities I've taken a part in at high school. Granted, I've only been put into two different placements thus far, although that will be made four by the time that summer draws to a close. My interest lies in the writing field; it's no wonder I'm writing for an online news source, right? Any writing is good writing, unless it's a dull report (can't say I like those much), although my preferred style of writing can be narrowed down even further. My goal is to become a successful novelist; I know, I know, it's a big dream. Despite that, I've had quite a lot of advice given to me, and where did most of it come from? My mentors in the CMP.

 My first Mentorship experience sent me into the heart of Dayton and a little down the road, to a corporation known as Cox Media. Inside the building contains a news program a majority of us watch: WHIO-TV. Along with that comes a newspaper that, also, many of us read or know of: Dayton Daily News. My CMP session sent me to follow two reporters of the newspaper: Lou Grieco and Christopher Magan. I was a little sketchy on the idea of shadowing reporters; it wasn't exactly my cup of tea, but I'm very glad that I did. I got to see, with my own eyes, how the procedure for reporting works. I got a better feel for the job through the questions that I got thorough answers for, and was able to realize, hey, this could be a pretty cool job in between writing books. Because, let's face it (I did), having no job besides writing books would never get me far if I even made it there.

If it hadn't been for the good impression that I received from Mr. Grieco and Mr. Magan, along with the rest of the employees at Cox Media, I might not have ended up where I am today: writing and reporting for County News Online. You never know.  My second placement sent me back to that bustling city and also gave me a strong sense of humored wistfulness. We met in a coffee shop, Martha Moody and I. She's a successful novelist and I was very eager to meet with her. She went over many different subjects with me, an important one being how a manuscript goes from just that to a novel. We went over the first part of my own manuscript together, with her carefully critiquing my work along the way. Through this experience, I learned more about my own personal strengths and weaknesses in the writing department, as well as critical information on the publishing process. There is no way that I would have passed up this experience as it was severely important to the field that I plan to go into, and I received so much information that still continues to help me in my writing quest.

 Both of these experiences were my first steps into the CMP. And this was the foreground for me to grab a sign-up sheet for the summer session, which I will be partaking in sometime in the upcoming months. I highly recommend for any and all students in high school to take a stab at this job shadowing. If it sounds boring, I can assure you it's not. 12-16 hours may seem like a lot in print, but you'll want to go back to visit the people you've met. It's through school programs like these that allow students to further explore their ideas for the future, all at a free cost except for the short ride to meet your mentor.

These types of experiences allow students to be able to ask questions pertaining to their interests to a specialized professional, not a school teacher who is not in that profession. Being able to experience firsthand the types of things that the mentor does can allow a student to realize either a) this is the job for me or b) maybe I should think about something else. I highly recommend it to students in high school, and for the parents of younger students to think about. With nothing to lose and only fun and experience to gain, why shouldn't a student participate in the Career Mentorship Program?

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