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Junior High students take part in an event to practice communication skills they've learned.
Kate Hope

Students in the Bear Branch Junior High and Magnolia Junior High College & Career Readiness class took part in the Employment Practice Interview Conference (EPIC) Event this week where 600 students put their communication skills to practice through mock interviews. 

The EPIC Event allows students to apply what they have learned in the semester-long class such as handshakes, eye contact, and communication skills to practice and to better prepare students with a real-life experience. 

"This event helps our students gain confidence with the chance to reflect on their non-verbal and verbal communication abilities," said teacher Maria Osborn. "It also provides an opportunity for interviewees to make mistakes and work on correcting them in a safe environment."

To prepare for the event, students selected a job that they were qualified for, adjust their resumes to fit the position, and complete an application prior to the interview. Volunteers that included local business and career experts, and school administrators were able to experience the concept of a real interview and obtain feedback. 

Students in the College & Career Readiness class also learn other important skills such as how to write a check, budgeting, and employability skills. The goal of the course is to educate students about the certifications and classes available to them in high school and give them time during the school day to think about their goals in high school and beyond. Whether they choose college, the military, trade school, or the workforce, the class helps students learn to make career decisions, set goals, and become more aware of their strengths and weaknesses.