The chamber's annual High School Business Symposium is organized each year by a group of business leaders from the Chamber's Schools and Business Committee. This year that group included Ed Alfred with St. Joseph's Ambulance Service, Lori Hart with Advantage Bank, John Huffman with Community Bank, Dave Lewis with WesBanco, Brian Raitz with the Parkersburg and Wood County Library, Jodi Smith with the WVU Extension Service and our wonderful chairperson Sarah Holt with Community Resources Inc.
The 70 students at last week's symposium represented Belpre, Parkersburg Catholic, Parkersburg, Parkersburg South, Ravenswood, St. Marys, Williamstown and Wood County Christian high schools. We thank the school leaders who support this event each year by selecting a wonderful group of students!
Students were divided into 11 groups and hosted by one of our business representatives:
The agenda for the day started with a discussion about each student's "brand" to emphasize the actions and activities they do today will be part of their identity in the future. Most importantly with the perpetual use of social media, advice was given to the students to think twice about everything they post and say on Facebook, Twitter and other social sites. Colleges review these posts when students apply, as do potential employers.
Don't badmouth a past employer or update your status with a tell-all about a night of debauchery or post a photo you wouldn't want your grandparents to see. With that in mind, be careful tagging photos of friends for the same reason. People viewing your Facebook site will draw impressions about these posts are they making the right impression about your "brand"?
A survey conducted after the High School Business Symposium reports that one of 70 students in attendance felt the only improvement they would make to the event is to add ice cream to the refreshments offered during the day. ell that's food for thought for next year, pardon the pun
The committee got a good laugh out of that suggestion. All the feedback was positive and is a major pat on the back by the 70 high school students who felt strongly they received value, learning opportunities and networking at the annual symposium last week. Given the right set of circumstances, I am hopeful these students stay in (or return to) the Mid-Ohio Valley and one day become our co-workers.
(Especially if the ice cream at meetings trend really kicks off I like mint chocolate chip.)
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Visit this space every other Sunday for more Chamber news. We also invite you to call us at 304-422-3588, email us at email@example.com, or stop by the Chamber office at 409 1/2 Market St. in Parkersburg.
Jill Parsons is president/CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley