Group discussions and meetings with vendors kept Benton Consolidated High School students moving on Wednesday as they participated in the first Career Expo held in Rich Herrin Gymnasium.
The event was co-hosted by the high school and the Franklin County Juvenile Justice Council.
Organizer and council chairman Monica Urban said the event went particularly well for the first run.
"We had a great turnout in terms of the number of vendors available to talk to students about career opportunities," Urban said. "We conducted a survey at the high school that indicated about 190 students were not planning to attend college after high school graduation. We wanted to show them that there are plenty of job opportunities without having to continue to hit the books for another four years or more after high school.
"We understand that not every student is cut out to attend college."
She said students had a variety of booths to visit.
"We had representatives from a great number of businesses including Ben's Lawn Service, Avon, the University of Illinois Extension Office, all five branches of military service, an instructor from a diving school, a dog groomer, restaurants, union representatives, ManTraCon and much more," Urban said.
"Representatives from Rend Lake College were also on hand to answer questions. We had a great bunch of kids who participated in the career expo and all went very well. The kids asked some serious questions about job prospects in the future."
Urban said students ages 15 to 18 learned how to fill out job applications.
"During the breakout sessions, they learned what to do or not to do when picking up job applications and about work ethics while on the job," she said.
Benton businesses donated items that were awarded to students as door prizes.