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Michigan City Chamber Members Speak with Students about Passion, Purpose,


What are YOU passionate about? 

Michigan City Chamber Members Speak with Students about Passion, Purpose,
and Future Careers


MICHIGAN CITY, IND., September 28, 2023 – Do you truly love what you do for a living? What are you passionate about? 


High-ability elementary school students from Michigan City Area Schools went beyond a traditional career fair to ask pressing questions such as these during a small-group interview session with members of the Michigan City Chamber of Commerce recently, part of a project titled “Living on Purpose: Finding Your Passion and Making an Impact.”


Fifteen members of the Michigan City Chamber of Commerce took part in the interview session with the students, who are in multiage (4th through 6th-grade) high-ability classes based at Springfield, Knapp, and Joy Elementary Schools. The interviews took place on Friday, September 15 at Michigan City High School. 


As part of a unit titled, "Living on Purpose: Finding Your Passion and Making an Impact,” students first honed their interviewing and research skills and then spoke with the professionals about their careers – and their motivations. 


“We had several goals in mind for our students as we designed this expeditionary unit,” said Knapp teacher Megan Boyter, who designed the program along with her colleagues Sheila Sobecki (Springfield) and Denise Yackus (Joy). “We wanted students to become more aware of people and their roles in society – to develop compassion and respect for these unique people and their careers. We also wanted them to be curious about pathways in life that they had not considered, and to be able to speak comfortably with adults, demonstrating their knowledge and confidence.” 


Students were encouraged to view their community with a new lens:  What are the jobs that people in their community do to create a place that works for everyone?


MCAS K-12 College and Career Coordinator Aaron Garrett connected the teachers and students with the Michigan City Chamber of Commerce for insight. Chamber President Katie Eaton, in turn, linked them with volunteers from Sullair/Hitachi, Franciscan Health, CLH CPAs & Consultants, Marbach America, the National Guard, GAF, KTR Corporation, McColly Real Estate, the Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters, and Michigan City Area Schools. 


Knapp sixth-grader Savannah Pollock interviewed engineer Stump Engibous of GAF, who told her, “If you choose a career that you like, going to work every day doesn’t exist. You're just going to have fun somewhere else.”  


“I think that Stump is saying that he isn’t waiting for the end of the day or for the weekend so he doesn’t have to go to work. He loves his job and is excited to go to work every day,” said Pollock.


Sixth-grader Malachi Weber interviewed Marcos Marcelo, President of KTR Corporation. “Knowing somebody else's story, like Mr. Marcelo’s, can be very inspiring because he found his passion and he knows and enjoys the fact that his career, company, and employees are all serving the community in so many different ways,” said Weber.


McColly Real Estate agent Paul Boyter shared the pros and cons of his career with sixth-grader Donevan Young. “The pros are you get to meet a lot of nice people and get to help them,” said Young. “Mr. Boyter loves to see customers with smiles on their faces.”


The students are now writing interview summaries. Once completed, the schools will post them in hallways on banners with pictures that were taken of the business professional. An end-of-unit expo will also give students an opportunity to share “passion projects” with the business professionals who were interviewed, along with others in the community.


For more information about the programs serving MCAS high-ability students, visit