West AlabamaWorks helps high schoolers find careers

By WVUA 23 News Reporter Savannah Denton

High school seniors from more than a dozen West Alabama high schools walked through the golden doors of opportunity Wednesday, looking for what life can become after graduation.

Senior students from Bibb, Greene, Hale, Lamar and Sumter county schools alongside Tuscaloosa city and Tuscaloosa County schools took over part of Shelton State Community College as part of the Worlds of Works classroom to career event. Students could speak with representatives from post-secondary schools and meet with industry professionals in a job fair setting.

WOW 2.0 is designed for high school seniors, allowing them to engage with potential employers and interview on-site for part-time or full-time jobs. This event connects job seekers with the high growth, high demand jobs available around West Alabama.

“I feel more comfortable because both interviews I had went well so far. They made me feel like I was at home already,” said Greene County student Napolean Hughes.

It’s an excellent opportunity for high school seniors who plan to enter the workforce full time after graduation, work part time in college or are interested in enrolling in an apprenticeship program.

West AlabamaWorks Executive Director Donny Jones said the event is a huge success.

More than 200 students attended and many of those left with a job waiting on them after graduation.

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Photo provided by West AlabamaWorks

“The companies are excited for the kids and the kids are leaving with smiles on their faces knowing that they have an opportunity of a lifetime. These companies are going to change and make a difference in their families,” said Jones.

Many companies such as Goodrich recruit year round.

“We learned a couple of years ago that you really have to invest in the future. Getting into the high schools and even down to the middle schools has really paid off,” said Doug Robertson, Goodrich contract services manager.

Tobias Watford Jr. came to WOW 2.0 last year as a student looking for a job. He got one, and this year he’s back as a recruiter.

“It’s good being on both sides actually, but it’s better on (the recruiter) side of course,” said Watford.

The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama will honor students who found a job May 2 at the Tuscaloosa Career and Technology Academy.

Categories: Local News