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Rutland program encourages young students to think about careers - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Rutland program encourages young students to think about careers

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CASTLETON, Vt. -

Students in Rutland County think that in today's economy the best way to get the job you want when you grow up is to create it for yourself.

Ty LaVictoire is only in seventh grade, but he has big career plans already.

"Technology has always been something I really like to do, so having a job with technology would be my dream," said LaVictoire.

LaVictoire says the only way to do what he really wants to do, is to start a business and do it himself.

"Steve Jobs created Apple and he created his own business and then there are some people who get hired and really work for that business," said LaVictoire. 

LaVictoire and more than 400 other seventh graders from Rutland County schools attended the "Your Journey Starts Here" program Thursday, an event put on by the Rutland Region Workforce Investment Board to encourage middle school students to start thinking about careers they want to pursue.

Educators say seventh grade is a crucial time. Students aren't quite yet under pressure to make major decisions, but they need to start thinking about what steps they will take toward the career they choose. 

"They're at a point where they will soon start making decisions about courses they take in high school, and from there, they're gonna start making decisions about how they want to continue their education," said Nancy Burzon from the RRWIB.

State leaders encourage students to think outside the box and are pushing entrepreneurship and job creation by staring their own businesses.

"We're trying to make sure that students who choose have opportunities to access better paid opportunities, but also honestly to innovate and develop their own opportunities," said Rebecca Holcombe from the Vermont secretary of the Agency of Education.

Small businesses significantly impact Vermont's economy. They represent 96.3 percent of all employers and employ 59.7 percent of the private sector labor force according to the Small Business Administration.

Those students who already have family businesses, want to keep them going and growing.

"I have a family farm where I live, and I'm thinking about doing like, power mechanics and all that," said student Dana Seward

As the event Thursday emphasized, middle school is the time to start thinking about what needs to be done to pursue those big plans.

"I think I might want to start taking some classes for coding and learning things on the computer and some more tools," said LaVictoire.

There are hundreds of students taking small steps toward growing the Green Mountain State's economy.

This is the fifth year the event has taken place and has included a variety of keynote speakers, including Channel Three's Darren Perron three years ago.

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