As Education Commissioner, I am committed to ensuring that our state’s students are prepared to contribute to Florida’s workforce through satisfying careers. While I absolutely love my job, there are certainly times I miss working in schools and being surrounded by students and the boundless potential they possess. That’s why one of my favorite events of the entire year is Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day.
Governor Rick Scott declared April 23, 2015 Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day in Florida, and I was pleased to host a very special day of activities for the children of Department of Education (DOE) staff members at the Turlington Building in Tallahassee. The children may have been most excited to spend a day away from school, but what they didn’t know was they were going to have an experience that could positively impact their futures. Understanding the value of a quality education, we took this opportunity to offer our team’s children a glimpse at the many career opportunities that will be available to them as long as they remain committed to academic success.
Our future leaders gained first-hand knowledge of the department’s everyday workflow and participated in engaging activities hosted by department employees.
One of the activity stations, presented by the Division of Blind Services, allowed students to interact with interesting technology that provides individuals with visual impairments added independence, as well as an athletic demonstration and a guide dog demonstration. At another station, local college students spoke to the children about their own experiences as students and explained how hard work and determination were necessary on their journey to a fulfilling career.
In one of the more active stations, children learned a fun and simple dance routine while exercising, promoting physical activity and healthy living. The department’s Bureau of Standards and Instructional Support focused their presentation on a brief STEM project, which is critical considering the fact that job opportunities in STEM fields continue to grow. During, the Growth Mindset and the Malleable Mind presentation, the children learned how their brain can make new connections and develop into adulthood.
This year’s national theme is “#MPOWR Knowledge+Choice=Strength.” It reminds our youth to be brave as they dream seemingly impossible dreams, explore new challenges and attain the success they have always hoped for.
My hope is that the children who participated in DOE’s Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day left knowing there are no limitations when it comes to the opportunities they will have access to with a quality education. It is our responsibility as parents, grandparents, civic leaders and educators to make sure Florida’s children know that they can set and achieve any goals they set.
We’d love to hear what your workplace did to #MPOWER future leaders to work hard in school so they can excel in careers.