During the first year of high school, students often start to think about career paths and the steps they should to take to achieve their aspirations. Every Monday morning at Humanitias Academy of Art & Technology at Esteban Torres High School, high school freshman have the chance to utilize a Grade Academic Success Block, which is a space for students to build community with peers and adults, learn about goal setting, explore different career opportunities, develop independence, and have dedicated additional time to focus on academics.
On Monday, October 28, as part of a Grade Academic Success Block session, the Los Angeles Rams worked with Los Angeles Education Partnership (LAEP) to host career chats with the high school freshman to speak to groups of students about the working elements of an NFL franchise and the variety of fields in the professional sports industry.
"It's important for students to start thinking about their career because there is a lot of pressure put on young people to know what they want to do with the rest of their lives," said Matt Moor, Senior College and Career Pathways Coordinator with LAEP. "Right now, we want to spark their interests, make them aware of a few different career pathways they can pursue, encourage students to start thinking now and let them know that it's okay to be unsure about what they want to be for the rest of their lives. Starting in 9th grade, it's intentional to alleviate some of that pressure."
Rams front office staff and LAEP volunteers visited five classrooms with approximately 25 students each. Two to three volunteers assigned to each classroom introduced themselves, shared their background and a bit about their positions with the Rams organization and how that particular field became of interest to them. Students then had the chance to participate in a Q & A session with staff and break off into groups for roundtable discussions.
"We had different people with variety of backgrounds and the LA Rams folks had different positions within the organization like Marketing, Community Relations, etc., it was really great for students to engage and interact with the volunteers about different careers," said Moor.
This career chat with LAEP is part of the Rams Staff Day of Service program. Each month, the Rams' front office staff volunteers with local non-profits. Since returning home to Los Angeles, the team's staff members have provided more than 7,400 hours of community service and impacted 150 local non-profits and 166 schools.