MEDWAY, Maine — Timberland Trucking Co. owner Roland Crawford was halfway through his first session as a guest speaker at Medway Middle School on Wednesday when he got a question he was waiting for.
The pupil, Crawford said, asked, “ ‘How much money can a business owner make?’”
“I told him that Bill Gates is a business owner,” Crawford said, “and that a business owner is a newspaper carrier as well as Bill Gates.”
That kind of eye-opening expanse of possibilities is what the school’s Career Day was all about. Thirty-six speakers ranging from electricians to TV newswomen put themselves at the disposal of middle-schoolers in speaking about their professions.
“We want to get their minds opened to what is out there for them,” school guidance-educational technician Angel Majkowski said. “Time goes by very quickly. Before they know it, they will be thinking about careers.”
A policeman, nurse, physician, veterinarian, newspaper reporter, two photographers, a park ranger, forest ranger and game warden, firefighters, a chef, National Guardsman, welder, mechanic, dental assistant, town employee, lawyer, banker and merchant mariner were among the speakers in various classrooms.
Pupils were free to attend the sessions they chose, so classroom size varied from two to 20 students. The professions were selected from polls of the students, and the speakers from those who volunteered to participate after Majkowski contacted them, she said.
The students were stimulated by the experience, Principal Rick Davis said.
“I went around to each [classroom] two or three times and I saw that the kids were very interested in what was going on,” Davis said. “You could see that the people who came were very excited to be there.”