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Career on Wheels succeeds

To the editor:

On April 26, we had a special event take place in our community and I would like to take a moment to thank those people who made this event possible. Through a partnership with the Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance, Ryan Flaherty from Prairie Lakes AEA, Iowa Central and a magnitude of local businesses, we hosted “Career on Wheels.” Career on Wheels is an event that took place in the south parking lot of Fort Dodge Middle School for over 300 fifth-grade students from Fort Dodge Middle School, St. Edmond, Gilmore City-Bradgate and Lu Verne schools.

We had 26 vehicles that encircled the parking lot for over a five-hour period, where local businesses and organizations donated their time to speak with students about their specific career. Students were able to learn about an assortment of career opportunities that are available in our community with a hands-on approach by being able to see different vehicles. Students toured the vehicles, saw the equipment, and visited with the professionals on how they make an impact on our community. Opportunities like this are vital to our community to provide for students to learn about the various careers that are available in their own backyard. It reinforces to students why Fort Dodge is a great place to work, live and play.

Words cannot express how incredibly thankful and appreciative we are to provide opportunities like this for our youth to help educate and inspire them to achieve their career goals. We are very fortunate that we live in a community where so many business professionals would take time out of their busy schedules to provide insight about their jobs and motivate our youth to dream big about their careers. Not only was this a magical day that helped set a spark among students to dream big about what they want to do but a day where we were able to blend four different schools together as one for an event they will remember. We are still receiving feedback from the schools to say that their students are still buzzing about the event and how they now know what they want to be when they grow up. It is days like this where I am extremely proud to say I live in a place where community members donate their time to inspire and educate their youth about the different possibilities that are available to them.

A big thank you to the following businesses and volunteers for their time that they devote to help educate our youth about the different opportunities available in our community: Bonnie Miller, Decker Truck Line, Department of Transportation, Children & Families of Iowa, Fort Dodge Fire Department, Fort Dodge Ford, Fort Dodge Police Department, Frontier Communications, Frontier Sports Park, Gunderson Funeral Home, Hagie Manufacturing, Iowa State Patrol, Iowa Works, Jerry Patterson, Joy of Reading, Kemna Motors, Kyle Bangert, Lanette Pearson, MIDAS, MidAmerican, Mike’s Pest Control, National Guard, Pizza Ranch, Shimkat, UnityPoint Health, UnityPoint Home Health Care, United States Postal Service, TNT Crane, Webster County Conservation, Webster County Emergency-Management, Ziegler and Zoey Miller.

Samantha Pingel

Intermediary Network Specialist

Iowa Central Community College

Fort Dodge