Guidance Department Announces Winners of 2020 Career Contest
For the past three years, Horizon’s Guidance Department has held a Career Contest during Career Month. Open to all kindergarten through twelfth grade students, the contest is intended to get students thinking about their futures. Submissions may be videos or written essays and must include why the student chose this career, what level of education they need to be successful, and any other necessary steps needed to achieve their goal.
“The Guidance Department received many great submissions this year,” stated Horizon Charter Schools Counselor Gabriel Robert. “We are amazed at the wonderful things our students are planning to do for their careers.”
Winning Entries Receive Gifts from Horizon’s Education Foundation
After carefully reviewing all submissions, the judges chose their top three entries. This year’s winners were:
- Shelby Mason
- Colin Gilpatric
- Hailey Blagg
Thanks to the generosity of the Horizon Charter Schools Education Foundation, prizes were awarded again this year for first, second, and third place entries. First place winner Shelby received a $50 gift card, and Colin and Hailey each received a $25 gift card.
Winning Career Contest Entries Show Diversity
Take a look at the winning entries from this year’s contest, and you’ll get a glimpse at the diversity of Horizon’s homeschooling students. Shelby has been focused on one goal since she was three. Colin started with a narrow career goal and expanded it. Hailey explored many options before determining her true calling. Having the flexibility and freedom to explore a large variety of interests is one of the many benefits of independent study.
Dancing Her Way to a Rewarding Career
Shelby, Horizon’s first place winner, has been dancing since she was just three years old, part of a competition team for seven years, and danced in the Nutcracker for seven seasons. She spent six years attending ballet summer intensive camps and last year trained at the University of Texas in Austin with the American Ballet Theatre.
An eighth grader already well on her way to becoming a professional ballet dancer, Shelby hopes to work with a major company such as Ballet Austin, San Francisco Ballet or the American Ballet Theatre. Watch her video entry and you’ll see what an impressive dancer she is!
From Bugs to Biology: Career Dream Evolves
Colin, a seventh grader at Horizon Charter School, is interested in becoming a wildlife biologist. Last year Colin received third place for his wonderful video describing his meeting with Justin Schmidt — the entomologist who created the insect sting pain index — and how that led him to want to pursue a career in entomology. This year Colin’s written essay details how his fascination with bugs evolved into wanting to learn about reptiles and other animals as well. As a volunteer at Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary, he, too, is already on his way to his dream career.
What I Want to be When I Grow Up
Have you ever wondered what it’s like to work with animals? My name is Colin. I am 12 years old and I want to be a wildlife biologist when I grow up. A wildlife biologist studies animals by tracking them and writing down notes and some educate people about the importance of a healthy environment. What I want to do is make sure all the animals are happy and healthy in their environment. When I go out in the environment I always bring gloves and a trash bag to pick up trash. Trash is bad for the environment because an animal could mistake it for food, eat it, and die. What attracted me to become a wildlife biologist is this YouTube nature show called, Brave Wilderness, where host, Coyote Peterson, goes on adventures to get up close with animals. And it’s good to meet other wildlife biologists. For example Justin Schmidt who is an Entomologist made the insect sting pain index.
I met him in Tucson, Arizona. I used to want to be an Entomologist but then I got interested in other wildlife like Herpetology.
I work at Happy Tails as a volunteer because they take junior volunteers at age 12. Happy Tails is a cat sanctuary where they take abused cats from dumpsters, bad homes, other shelters, the streets, or those that are strays. When I turn 13 I plan to work at SPCA, which is an adoption center with dogs, cats, and bunnies. They take junior volunteers at age 13, and my short/long-time goal is to work at Effie Yeaw which is a wildlife sanctuary where animals cannot be released back into the wild, for example, there is a rattlesnake that was born in captivity and would never survive in the wild. My long-term goal is to get trained as a vet tech.
As a vet tech I want to make sure all the animals that come in are healthy and with the unhealthy animals I will treat them. I can earn my vet tech license at Sierra College after I have completed high school. Another volunteer opportunity is volunteering at the Sacramento Zoo at age 13 to be a junior reptile keeper. I am also going to have a YouTube nature show called, “Colin Of The Wilderness.” where I plan to get up close with some pretty fascinating animals. This show is planned to come out in 2021 and when I turn 16 I will be trained to catch rattlesnakes. I plan to go to UC Davis to get my Biology Degree while working as a vet tech. I’ve already encountered Garter snakes, western fence lizards, and southern alligator lizards. I want to go to Ohio, Florida, Amazon, Costa Rica, and several more places to study different kinds of animals.
In conclusion, these are the steps to my career as a wildlife biologist. I hope you found my journey toward being a wildlife biologist interesting.
Passion for Writing Sparks a Career Idea
Our third-place winner in the Career Contest is Horizon Charter Schools tenth grader Hailey. Although she’s changed her career goal several times over the years, Hailey is now certain she’d like to become a journalist. She loves to write and wants to provide information that will help people. She also has a desire to learn more about celebrities. These passions helped Hailey choose to become a journalist. Her video entry takes us through her career journey that started in kindergarten and explains what it will take for her to follow her dream.
Other Horizon Students Share Career Choices
To learn more about Horizon Charter Schools students’ career goals, check out the 2019 Career Contest Winners. For guidelines and information about the Guidance Department’s annual contest and to see the entries from the inaugural contest, visit Horizon’s Guidance Department Holds Annual Career Contest.
Interested in supporting this worthwhile cause? Learn more about the Horizon Charter Schools Education Foundation.
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As the region’s oldest, free, public, K-12, charter school, Horizon knows what it takes to help independent study families succeed. A WASC accredited school, we provide a variety of learning options, plus enrichment classes including: driver’s training, martial arts, gymnastics, dance, drama, art, engineering, music, horsemanship, and more!
Our robust support model includes experienced supervising teachers who meet with families on a regular basis to answer questions and make sure students are on track as well as guidance counselors to help with everything from preparing for high school, college or a career to work permits, financial aid, and testing.
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