These Chesterfield students are leaving high school with full-time jobs

Posted at 12:19 PM, Apr 26, 2023

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- Chesterfield County celebrated 50 students who are heading to work full-time right after high school during a special ceremony Wednesday morning.

The annual "Career Signing Day" was held at the Chesterfield Career and Technical Center on Hull Street, where employers, parents and teachers clapped and cheered as students signed paperwork to solidy their future.

"That is our job in public schools, to make sure every student is set up for success," said school board member Kevin Carroll.

From cosmetology to culinary, the hands-on skills these students have learned while in school will help launch their success.

"This program has helped me figure out what I really want to do," explained high school senior Quinne Deworken. "And it's opened me up to so many opportunities."

Deworken is in the automotive program. She’ll be working for Chesterfield County’s Fleet Garage this summer.

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Quinne Deworken

"I've just always loved doing hands-on work, and just how cars work," she noted. "So when I learned about the program, I wanted to do it right away."

“I think this, our program in general, kind of shows everybody that you can make a living without going to college," said automotive technology instructor Zach Stephens.

Stephens is not just one of Deworken's teachers, he's also a graduate of the Career and Technical Center.

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Chesterfield Career Signing Day 2023

"Back in the day, kind of, it was college, college, college, you know, my parents said college, college," Stephens explained. "But then they let me pick what I wanted to do, which was great for me and led me on this path to come back teaching.”

Stephens is grateful for Signing Day because it gives his students the spotlight.

"When parents are at work, they're like, 'oh, my kids going to this school, my kids going to this school,' and some parents like, 'oh, my kid, you know, he's working,' and they don't get that excitement," he noted. "But now they can because they're doing this, so I think it's awesome to see."

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Chesterfield Career Signing Day 2023

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