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Eighth-graders practice their interview skills

TERI VANCE
BRAD HORN/Nevada Appeal Social studies teacher Ananda Campbell helps eighth-grader Cody Tyzbin put on a tie before his mock job interview at Carson Middle School on Thursday morning.
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Eren Reyes, 14, wants to be an attorney when she grows up. She’s making the connections now.

“I interviewed yesterday with Matthew Griffin, one of the district attorneys, and with another one, Melanie Bruketta, today,” Reyes explained. “They gave me the opportunity to go to the courthouse and see how courts work.

“And they said I could call anytime. It feels great.”

As part of their career unit at Carson Middle School, students in Ananda Campbell’s eighth-grade social studies class spent three days this week in mock job interviews with professionals from the community.

“These kids are going to be in the community. They’re going to be getting jobs,” Campbell explained. “It’s important for them to know how to sell themselves, not only on paper but in person.”

Attorney Frank Flaherty volunteered Thursday to interview students in the school’s library.

“It’s like a lot of things, you just need mileage,” he said. “The first one never goes as well as the second, and the second never goes as well as the third.”

Before going to the interviews, students participated in a career fair, then learned the basics of business documents such as cover letters and resumes.

They also created brochures with pictures of themselves and personal information.

“All of it was interesting because you’re teaching the person about yourself,” said Richone Cancimilla, 14. “To me, this was a fun experience because it gives you an idea of what you’re going to be getting into when you’re older.”

Bruketta said she volunteered her time because she saw the project as a worthwhile investment.

“I think it’s important for people to get involved in schools because children are so important,” she said. “I want them to be successful.”

And she was impressed with their work.

“They’ve done an excellent job, and they seem to be well-prepared,” she said.

Mikel Schocten, 13, appreciated the volunteers.

“It gives us a lot of experience for when we grow up,” he said. “This is the real thing instead of just fake.

Contact Teri Vance at tvance@nevadaappeal.com or at 881-1272.