Trades, tech and so much more at GlenX
Glenwood Springs Post Independent
A sea of high school students from Rifle, Coal Ridge, Grand Valley, Meeker, De Beque and Liberty Classical Academy flooded the Garfield County Fairgrounds for the third annual GlenX Career Expo on Tuesday in Rifle.
More than 1,500 sophomores, juniors and seniors spent the morning talking with 115 businesses from throughout Garfield County and Western Colorado.
The expo gave students a chance to walk around and meet and talk to as many people currently in prospective careers they are interested in.
“Being able to come out and chat with a bunch of people on getting me prepared for my life, and what I want to do after high school is pretty cool,” Rifle High School sophomore Jorge Fletchalo said. “I think I might go to the Marines. I talked to them, they gave me a bunch of ideas to get me ready for them.”
With a new location this year, GlenX was able to bring in businesses and offer over half a dozen skilled trades demonstrations outside the event center during the expo.
“The trade side is really important, a lot of the kids don’t know about the trade industry, and there’s interest in it. This gives them an opportunity to explore that career option,” GlenX organizer Jayne Poss said.
With the added space and success of the skilled trades demo area, Poss hopes to increase that number for next year.
“What we’ve discovered here using the event center at the Garfield County Fairgrounds is that we can now bring in more businesses, more demonstration so we can move it up a notch at this venue,” Poss said.
For Rifle Junior Abigail West, the event helped her talk with the Rifle Police Department, U.S. Navy, Colorado State Patrol and Colorado Mountain College Police Academy and the division of wildlife for possible career paths after high school.
“I think for me it’s mostly that I like solving puzzles, and to do that professionally and especially to help keep the community safe,” West said of possibly going into law enforcement.
Altai Chuluun, founder of GlenX was on hand Tuesday for the annual fall event at Rifle.
“The first two years I like to say we were kind of testing things; things were raised up a notch when Jayne came on board,” Chuluun said.
“For the career talks we only had to do one session because we can fit all 1,500-plus kids in the grandstand. At the high school we could only fit 600, so we had to stagger it with three sets of talks.”
With the first session wrapping up and the sun beginning to burn off the lingering cold morning air, Rifle High School, Coal Ridge, Grand Valley, Meeker, De Beque and Liberty Classical Academy students filled the grandstand in the outdoor arena for career talks keynote speakers.
This year, keynote speakers included Kathryn Regjo, vice president of academic affairs for CMC, and Corey Ciocchetti, associate professor of business ethics at the University of Denver.
Regjo, who lives in Eagle, wanted students to find their curiosity, look for opportunities, mentors and don’t be afraid to walk through the door when opportunity knocks.
For Corey Ciocchetti, a former lawyer, all the money he made never equated to happiness, and he wanted students to think about what makes them happy.
“As you are thinking about your career and the rabbits that you chase, I want you to think about your legacy at this high school and what you want to do into the future. Think about your life in terms of inches and not touchdowns, which means you need to get goosebumps every day from the cool things you get to do at this place,” Ciocchetti said.
Glenwood High School will host the spring GlenX Career Expo March 5. Organizers expect 1,800 students from Aspen to Glenwood to attend the event.