Manzanola students got a peek a couple of weeks ago at the journey that lay ahead of them after graduation.

Junior and senior high school students explored their career interests and heard from professionals from many different professions during the Manzanola High School Career Day and Campus Roadshow, sponsored by the Manzanola FFA chapter. The event wrapped up on Jan. 25.

Presenters included Dr. Carol Ann Lapinski of Peak View Animal Hospital, Ken Parker of Rocky Ford Livestock, Terry Hogue and Peggy Messick of Otero Junior College's Certified Nursing Assistant Program, Randy Sharon of Sharon Construction, Elizabeth Tellessen of Winston & Cashett Law Partners, Brook Matthew of OJC, Capt. Jordan Morgan of the National Guard, and Jolene Hamilton of the Ag Journal.

"Career day was a great opportunity for students to be exposed to a vast spectrum of careers from a variety of areas of the workforce," said Manzanola Dean of Students Susie Gilbert. "Whether students are interested in the military, design, education or agriculture, there was something for everyone.

"Hopefully, this day opened some eyes and encouraged our students to look at different career paths available to them."

The Campus Roadshow followed career day. Two juniors and seven seniors visited the University of Denver, Colorado State University-Fort Collins, and AIMS Community College-Greeley. They also got to watch the University of Northern Colorado men's basketball game.

The goal of the activities was to expose Manzanola students to career options and opportunities, said Manzanola FFA advisor Becky Ball.

The Manzanola FFA chapter sponsored the program as part of its Student Development Program of Activities initiative. Funding for the activities was raised by providing VIP seating for home athletic events and by managing the new water filtration system at the high school gymnasium.

jhamilton@ljtdmail.com