NTHS and SkillsUSA host annual Career Day

Keynote speaker Lin Pernill (‘13) speaks to current CHS students about her experiences.


Keynote speaker Lin Pernill (‘13) speaks to current CHS students about her experiences.

Everyone has, at one point, been asked the dreaded question: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” On Friday, Feb. 10, SkillsUSA hosted its annual Career Day to help students answer this question. CHS alumni and other professionals visited the school, sharing their experiences and stories with students.

The event began with students attending six 20-minute presentations from speakers including CHS alumni Mark Ferre, a talent agent at Daniel Hoff Agency (CHS ‘12), and Jackie Tempera, a writer for Women’s Health magazine (‘11). There were also presentations given by professionals who did not graduate from CHS.

The day finished with a speech by photographer and entrepreneur Lin Pernill (‘13), who, as the keynote speaker, discussed how CHS helped shape her passion.

“It was such a nostalgic and sentimental feeling to get to be back in the high school that quite literally catapulted my photography career,” Pernill said. “CHS is where I first learned skills I still use to this day.”

Pernill is not the only alum that feels this way. Tempera echoed this sentiment and expanded on how CHS helped build her career.

“I learned a lot about the foundations of writing and reporting and I feel like I got a true journalism education from CHS,” Tempera said.

While many students may not currently know what they want to do for a career, it is undeniable that many alumni agree that CHS is what helped them to get their foot in the door of their respective industries.

Tempera hopes her presentation at Career Day taught students a valuable lesson, reinforcing that life changes and you have the ability to improve.

Sophomore Christie DeNicola of Tinton Falls found Career Day to be a success and enjoyed all of the presentations, especially Ferre’s.

“The talent agent was my favorite seminar. I thought the way that he talked about his job was great, and the life he built for himself,” DeNicola said.

DeNicola further elaborated, adding that she specifically found how Ferre “took what he liked to do, and made a career out of it,” very inspiring.

It’s the exposure to careers and advice from the speakers that makes Career Day such a huge success. For freshmen, Career Day was an informative new experience.

“Overall, I thought it was fun because I got to learn about professions that I never really knew about before,” said freshman Anya Alston of Middletown.

Throughout all of the presentations, the theme, “do what you love,” was reinforced. For high school students, thinking about the future can be daunting. The speakers allowed for a breath of fresh air, showing students that no matter their path, they will end up where they aresupposed to be.

“I wanted everyone to feel like it was OK to pursue their passions, change their mind, and really own their skill set,” Tempera said.