When I was five or six, a childhood friend had her birthday party on Mr. Knozit’s television show. The jovial host, who became an institution in South Carolina educational programming, had a favorite question, and I couldn’t WAIT to answer it. “What will YOU do when you grow up?” he asked. I piped up with unbridled enthusiasm: “A cheerleader for the Carolina Game-cops [sic]!” Obviously.
It didn’t take long into my adolescence for me to realize that I didn’t quite have the chops for professional cheerleading. But it was also during those formative years that I was watching my dad build a local cable company and my mom build a retail company that helped artisans in Mexico. I was a lucky kid. Though I didn’t think much of it at the time, it was undoubtedly my exposure to their non-traditional, entrepreneurial paths that gave me the courage to pursue a unique career in public service.
A young person’s imagination is a powerful thing; but I daresay it is—often to our collective detriment—limited by what we know: the people, jobs, lifestyles, and communities we’re exposed to in our formative years.
That’s why SC Future Minds is proud to partner with LeadershipSC on a new online platform, Inspire A Career. We want to expose South Carolina’s students, many of whom live in isolated communities, to what they may not know—the expansive universe of job opportunities that await them around our state.
The website, developed by LeadershipSC and hosted by SC Future Minds, serves as a matchmaking service for South Carolina professionals and public schools whose students will benefit from learning about different career paths.
Through a simple online registration process, we will connect professionals in our database to schools and classrooms for career days or other job-oriented events.
But the platform can’t work without you!
We need professionals from all industries and backgrounds to offer their stories and adventures with classrooms around the state. The process takes three minutes, and you can even indicate how far (or short) you’re willing to travel.
I encourage you to sign up today, and, like Mr. Knozit and my parents, help stoke the imagination and ambition of our future workforce. You, too, can Inspire A Career.
Caroline Mauldin is the Executive Director of SC Future Minds, a statewide nonprofit connecting private resources to public education as a cornerstone of social and economic progress in South Carolina. Learn more about their work at scfutureminds.org.