Alums Share Career Perspectives
SJND’s annual Alumni Career Day is one of the ways we set our students up for success in college and beyond. This year’s event was a great afternoon of discovery for our current seniors who had the chance to hear from alumni about specific career options. For alumni, the day was about reconnecting with SJND and having the opportunity to meet with and give back to our current students.
Sixteen alumni returned to campus to share their experiences with the senior class. This year’s alumni speakers represented a wide range of careers and included graduates from the class of 1953 to the class of 2009. Some fields represented were Architecture, Advertising and Sales, Finance, Visual Art, Entrepreneurship, Social Work, Public Safety, Law, Aviation, Computer Technology, and Education. Alumni who spent the afternoon at SJND were Maggie Berkshire Doyle ’88, Arianna Borsoni ’09, Crystal Cajilog ’07, Danielle Campbell ’06, John Campbell ’88, Tim DeGrano ’83, Bill DeMar ’94, John Dinga ’63, Christopher Dunick ’97, Matthew Guichard ’65, Katelyn Lucas ’08, Jose Macias ’99, Kevin Nieland ’75, Rachel Anne Palacios ’92, Maurice "Skip" Quain ’55, Robert Thompson ’53.
Career Day began with a lunch for alumni speakers and a group of seniors. Lunch was a great time of sharing SJND memories and experiences, meeting fellow Pilots and enjoying delicious food together. Our seniors enjoyed making connections with and learning from the alumni about their careers and lives.
After lunch, seniors and alumni speakers moved to the Kelly gymnasium for a panel discussion. Principal Chiu introduced each alum to the students and opened the discussion with questions about how alums chose their careers, who their mentors were, and what networking opportunities were beneficial in advancing their careers.
Then everyone headed off to class for small, field specific sessions. Each student attended two sessions led by one or more alumni. Speakers presented on their careers during the sessions and students asked questions and engaged in conversation with them. The sessions were interactive and featured materials from the speakers’ places of work, original artwork, and even a short spoken-word poetry performance by alum Katelyn Lucas ’08 who is a poet as well as a small business owner.
Career Day was a great opportunity for our seniors to learn about careers they might be interested in, learn about careers they may not have known about before, make connections with SJND alumni, and take some time to think about all of the possibilities for their futures.