Roanoke organizations host “Graduation Carnival” for high school seniors

Published: Jun. 6, 2023 at 11:16 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - William Fleming and Patrick Henry seniors will be walking across the stage to receive their diplomas on Wednesday and Thursday. Goodwill Industries of the Valleys, Greater Roanoke Workforce Development Board and Total Action for Progress wanted to show the students the opportunities that are out there Tuesday afternoon by hosting“2023 Graduation Carnival.”

“Today we are outreaching graduating seniors from William Fleming and Patrick Henry High Schools to let them know about what programming we have available to help them if they are interested in any type of training or certification before going on to work or help with finding jobs. We’ve got 30 employers here with us today and lots of fun carnival activities, we want it to be a fun event,” said Toni McLawhorn, the business and development manager for the Greater Roanoke Workforce Development Board.

McLawhorn said it’s a great opportunity for these students to see what’s out there, especially by being able to engage in conversation with the people who are a part of each organization.

“It does show them a large variety because the number of different types of occupational fields we have represented today are very, very vast. So it gives them an opportunity to look at well, who has what and what are the expectations and to evaluate the different types of opportunities that these employers do have available. It’s really important for our young people to go ahead and get stared in the workforce. They are going to be our workforce in the future,” said McLawhorn.

A few soon to be William Fleming High School graduates shared they do appreciate having these opportunities.

“It’s good to look into things and for them to give a bunch of opportunities to get involved in different things. I think it’s really good for the community,” said Roger Markham, who will graduate from Fleming on Wednesday.

The three organizations are also working together to offer “Summer Youth Work Programs” to kids in the Roanoke Valley. For more information on how to get involved, you can head to Goodwill Industries of the Valleys website here, GRWDB’s website here and TAP’s website here.