This year's Grade 9 work experience program gave 24 eager Grade 9 students a real-life taster of what it means to have a job. The feedback from the students, teachers and the hosting companies and organizations was overwhelmingly positive and encouraging. The program itself was launched last year as a part of an action research project done by ISP staff members Rajvinder Bolla, Marie Lechantre and Cyrille Lavalle. Last year was a trial with 9 students, and with the good experience this year, the goal is to expand the program for all Grade 9 students next year.
The benefits of the work experience project are manifold: it gets students to think about the branches that they are interested in, and helps them identify specific skills that they will need in the working life. The experience may also guide them with their IB Diploma subject choices, and future career planning. It is also very much aligned with our Strategic Plan goal of providing students with experiential learning.
The students were selected based on formal applications and job interviews, and the school helped them find employers in their field of interest. During the five-day working period, each student was paid a visit by an ISP staff member, who observed the working conditions and checked on their progress.
The companies and organizations welcoming our students this year included a telecommunications provider, an embassy, an architect and design firm, a veterinary school and a veterinarian, an advocate's bureau, a day-care service, a humanitarian organization, a bank and a tattoo parlor. Quite a diverse list of opportunities! A heartfelt thank you to all of them for giving our students this valuable experience.
If you have a connection with a company that might be interested in giving our students a week-long work experience next spring, please get in touch with Paul Willson at firstname.lastname@example.org or Cyrille Lavalle at email@example.com.