By Jason Sethre
Fillmore County Journal
This past week, we had an awesome day on the schedule. It was Tuesday, April 26, 2022.
On this day, we were scheduled to present the 2022 Teacher of the Year award to Stacey Schultz, a 2nd grade teacher at Spring Grove Public Schools. She didn’t know it, but her staff, her students, local businesses, and our team at the Journal were all in on the big surprise. You can read all about it in the Teacher Appreciation Week section in this issue of the Fillmore County Journal, in which we honor all of our area educators.
Coincidently, Houston Public Schools offered freshmen an opportunity to take a day away from school to job shadow a local business in the area. This was part of a life study skills class.
And, whomever came up with the idea deserves a pat on the back. We need more of this. Truly brilliant!
I like this idea, and I hope all of our area schools offer a similar job shadowing experience. It gives students a reason to step into a local business and ask questions they might not otherwise ever consider. It also gives them a sense of what jobs might be available should they decide to stay in the area. Our rural communities are always struggling with the “brain drain” after our young people graduate from high school. Our small towns do offer a land of opportunity. We just need to invite more young people into our businesses so they can see the potential.
We were honored to have two freshmen from Houston Public Schools join our team for a job shadowing experience.
At our office in Preston, Casey Herek joined our graphic design team to get a sense of what’s involved in their job. And, in our Caledonia office, Destiny Eddy spent the day with Reporter Charlene Corson Selbee.
Casey started his day with a visit to Spring Grove for the Teacher of the Year award presentation. And, then he spent time with our design team learning about deadlines and design programs. Our team was impressed with all of his questions. I spent some time with Casey explaining how were more than a newspaper. Our designers manage our social media and online presence. They are tremendously involved in the production of the Visit Bluff Country Magazine. We have team members dedicated to website development under the umbrella of SMG Web Design. We design and print high quality glossy finished publications like tourism guides, brochures, and business cards. And, I even showed Casey a new project we launched a couple of months ago, which I will share with our readers next week. As I explained to Casey, the newspaper is a big part of what we do every day. But, we are a multimedia company full of diverse offerings.
Destiny attended the Houston County Commissioners meeting with Charlene, observing a three-hour meeting in which there was great discussion about poll pads. She took notes, came back to the office, and wrote up a paragraph about the meeting and specifically poll pads. Charlene said she was impressed with Destiny’s writing skills. Destiny even wrote the headline for the article. Charlene showed her around our Caledonia office, and showed her what types of programs we use each day to get the job done. They talked about her interests, classes that capture her interest, college, and possible jobs. Charlene also went through past issues of the newspaper with Destiny, along with showing her the most recent copy of the Visit Bluff Country Magazine. Before she left, she mentioned to Charlene that she would like to come back and learn more.
At the end of the day, our team felt privileged and honored that Casey and Destiny chose the Fillmore County Journal for their job shadowing experience. Very cool!
We love what we do. It takes a team to do what we do, no different than any other company. And, we love sharing this experience with others who may some day want to become a part of our team.
For any company, it’s important to embrace the next generation. We need to show them that this is a land of job opportunities, and we hope they want to be a part of it.
Thanks to Casey and Destiny for joining us for the day. And, thanks to Houston Public Schools for offering this opportunity to your freshmen.