The Counseling Office and Career Center will be hosting a series of guest speakers throughout the year. Students will have an opportunity to hear from current professionals about their jobs, their training, their personal experiences, and any tips they have for high school students. All speakers will visit during lunch in the Career Center (Room 300), unless otherwise noted.
The schedule of speakers is as follows:
Interested students should sign up in the Career Center (Room 300)
** schedule subject to change **
CAREER SERIES RECAP
Colin Kelly - Senior Staff Attorney - Orange County Coastkeeper
- Grew up surfing and wanted to do something about "Urban Slobber" polluting his waves
- Southern California Native; attended undergrad at University of Oregon; Whittier Law School
- He shared, "an undergraduate degree in something that interests you is more useful for getting into law school and practicing law than picking a "Pre-Law" major...No major is more "Pre-Law" than another, so discover a passion if you want to become a lawyer."
- He goes to work in shorts and flip flops!
Charlene Nadela and Amanda Ferguson - Registered Nurses
- Both graduated from Mayfair High School (2012 and 2008)
- Inspired to go into nursing by personal and family experiences with nurses
- They spoke about the good, the bad, the ugly, and the sad
- Their favorite part of the job includes patient interaction
- Challenges include dealing with loss and the stress of the job
- Generally they work 36 hours a week, pick their schedules, and are paid well
- They encourage current high schools students to start looking into nursing programs, start to get some experience by volunteering, and make plans for college.
- "You have to love what you do"
- "In college you're on your own, so seek help when you need it."
Gary Gaspar - Operations Manager - Brenntag Pacific
- Didn't plan on this career but he loves it. Started as a community college student interested in being a firefighter.
- Worked at UPS as a graveyard warehouse worker while in college and transferred to Cal State Dominguez Hills
- After earning his degree, partially funded by UPS, he went into a supervisory position at UPS and decided to grow within the sector, rather than pursue firefighting.
- Enjoys the logistics challenges of his job and seeing what kinds of raw materials he processes and where they end up (hot sauce, for example).
- There are MANY entry level jobs within his industry and lots of room for growth.
- Encouraged students to look into degrees in Business Management, Logistics and Supply Chain Management.
- "Everything comes from somewhere. It has to be built, distributed, stored, sold, and shipped."
- "The title of your degree and where you earned it from is less relevant than your work ethic and your work experiences."
Nichole Pichardo - Communications Specialist (BOUSD)
- Thought about going into broadcast communications in radio
- Attended California State University, Fullerton
- Interned for Ryan Seacrest radio show
- Diverse experiences in the corporate PR/Communications sector
- Currently working in PR and Communications for a public school district
- Favorite part of the job includes helping to spread the word on big products, projects, and events that she believes in and wants others to know about
Zitlalic Domond and Tyler Kisslan -
Project Coordinator at Community Service Programs and Anaheim Police Officer
- Zitlalic earned a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice and a Master's Degree in Public Administration - both from California State University, Fullerton. She chose a degree in Public Administration as a broad degree to giver her options for possible jobs working with the public.
- She works with the Anaheim Police Department in a Gang Reduction and Intervention Partnership
- Favorite part of the job – being able to have an idea and use her creativity to create new programs
- Officer Kisslan earned a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice from California State University, Fullerton
- He explained two paths to becoming a police officer – put yourself through a police academy and then apply, or apply for a job and have the police department pay for their academy. Entering with a college degree already completed can lead to higher starting pay and promotion.
- They work together with youth who are at risk
- Both encouraged students to take advantage of internships
Troy Collins - Script Coordinator for Sony Pictures Animation Studios
- Troy earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Screenwriting from Chapman University
- He worked his way into his current position following different experiences within the entertainment industry, including temporary and assistant positions with the Discovery Channel, Entermediarts, Inc. (where he served as Executive Assistant to "Dancing with the Stars" judge Ms. Carrie Anne Inaba), Paramount Pictures, and Paramount Animation
- He oversees various aspects of creating animated movies, including sitting in on art work being created, managing the reading and recording of scripts, coordinating storyboards, etc.
- He likes his job because he works with cool and creative people and gets to see works of animation come to life
- Challenges include how to approach and solve problems during production with different personalities
- There are many ways to start within the entertainment industry and a lot of room for growth. If interested in Art and Animation, students should look for opportunities as Production Assistants and network, and let it be known that you are interested in Animation
- He stressed the importance of building relationships, being nice to people, and networking
- "You can't just graduate college and expect a job. You have to reach out and network. In the entertainment industry, there is no one way to a job, and once in you aren't doing just one thing."Nathan Goncalves - Legal Extern (3L Law Student at UCLA Law) / Army Veteran
- Nathan is a non-traditional law school student
- He enlisted in the Army as Infantry at 23 years of age during the surge in Iraq and following several years working odd jobs and trying to "figure things out."
- He retired after 5 years of service in the Army and enlisted as a Community College student with ZERO college credits to his name. In order to benefit from military educational benefits he made up for lost time upon enrolling in multiple community colleges, where he completed his entire undergraduate degree in 2.5 years, which included transferring to UCLA.
- As a 3rd year law student at UCLA, he works under a supervisory attorney for a community organization serving low-income clients.
- Helping people to gain independence and helping the public are among his favorite parts of his job; challenges include working within a legal system that is challenging for individuals lacking resources.
- He spoke about differences in pay, work hours, and duties among different types of lawyers
- His advice to high school students seeking to join the military is for them to know what they would like to do and what they would like to get out of the military. He encouraged students to prepare for the ASVAB and re-take it if they are not satisfied with their results.
- He advised students "not to take too long" to figure things out so they don't waste too much time after high school, but he credited his wisdom and his experiences he gained to the non-linear path he took.
- He warned students that law school is usually a full-time commitment and it is unlikely that students can work, especially during their first year.
- "If you plan on going to law school, you should be be comfortable writing A LOT."
Lori Collins - Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer, Staff at Cypress College Mortuary Science Program
- Lori started community college not sure what she wanted to do. She took several classes in areas she thought she liked and discovered that she wasn't interested in pursuing those areas.
- She liked Art and she liked Anatomy. It was suggested to her that she look into this career and it worked out well.
- She now works as a part-time embalmer and funeral director for a local funeral home, where she works directly with bodies, but also with prep services, funeral arrangements, memorial services, etc.
- She is also on staff at Cypress College where she teaches in the Mortuary Science Deprtament. The program works with unclaimed bodies. The program is very unique and is only one of two in the state of California. Students take classes in areas such as: Funeral Service Management, Embalming, Funeral Directing, Anatomy, Pathology and Microbiology, Restorative Art, Funeral Service Counseling, and Mortuary Law...just to list a few.
- With an Associate's Degree, Licensure, and a paid-internship, students can start within the career.
- She likes the fact that she does something different every day at work and she does something that nobody else does.
- Challenges include helping families deal with a very difficult time in their lives. Moving heavy bodies can also be a challenge.
- She recommends high school students to pursue studying even if they aren't sure what they want to do. Many times students learn what they don't want to do and discover something they didn't know existed.
- She said, "We actually work more with live people than dead people," meaning that they work with people and families through the entire process. These people may include family, hospitalpractitioners, coroners, etc.
- For more information on the Mortuary Science Program at Cypress College, visit: http://www.cypresscollege.edu/academics/academicPrograms/HealthScience/MortuaryScience
Claudia Fotiou - Athletic Trainer
- Claudia is the Athletic Trainer for Mayfair High School Athletics. She also teaches the CalAps class.
- She wasn't sure what she wanted to do out of high school, but figured it out at Pasadena City College, where she was a student-athlete. She got injured and got to know the profession well.
- She transferred to California State University, Northridge.
- Athletic Trainers are NOT Personal Trainers. Athletic Trainers are Healthcare Professionals for the physically active. They work under the Sports Medicine Umbrella. Their goals are to Evaluate, Treat, and Rehabilitate athletes.
- Profession evolved out of Collegiate Athletics. Now Athletic Trainers are certified healthcare providers, who work in many settings: secondary schools, colleges/universities, professional sports, performance art (example: Cirque du Soleil), clinical, military, industrial/occupational/corporate.
- Claudia spoke about how pay varies, depending on the setting. Generally per diem standard pay is about $45/hour. Many trainers who work with teams have salary contracts and make very good money, but travel with teams.
- Things she loves about her job: It is not indoors; mostly on the sidelines at sporting events. It allows her to develop relationships with patients. Her patients are highly motivated to return to athletic performance. It is a proactive approach to healthcare.
Martin Martinez (Plumbing Foreman) and Jane Templin (Outreach Director - Net Zero Plus Electrical Training Institute)
- Martin is a graduate of Mayfair High School. He has been a plumber for 18 years and grew up around the construction trades.
- Jane has been in the trade since 1976 and was one of the first women apprentices. She now works in outreach for ETI, which offers various training and apprenticeship programs for electricians.
- Both were trained through apprenticeship programs, where they worked, gained on-the-job and hands-on training, while getting paid to go school. They started their jobs debt free and well on their way towards a career path with room for growth.
- They described the training as "shoulder to shoulder learning" that is ever-evolving. They are always accumulating knowledge.
- They spoke about the strength and solidarity of union work within the construction trades, where they provide quality skilled-labor, which allows them to earn enough to care for their families. They credit Unions for making work environments better and safer.
- The discussed general timelines and expectations in the evolution from Apprentice and on. Apprenticeships vary within the scope of the work.
- An Apprentice can start immediately following high school making $17.50 an hour. The general path begins as an Apprentice, to Journeyman, to Foreman, to General Foreman, to General Contractor. It is very possible to earn 6 figures!
- Martin mentioned the camaraderie among fellow workers as a favorite part of the job. Jane mentioned the feeling of turning on the power on an entire project and seeing the fruits of her labor.
- Challenges include coordinating between trades on a job site as well as working with people who cut corners and affect safety. practices.
- They spoke about the need to be committed. They have to be specialized because any small mistake can lead to injury or death. Trade jobs are Drug-Free to ensure safety. Background checks are conducted. Construction trades are known for being "forgiving of your past," as long as you are able to demonstrate that you've moved past it.
- For more information about different trades and apprenticeship programs, visit: http://www.calapprenticeship.org