College planning, financial aid and technical education are a few topics that will be discussed at the 26th annual Glendale Unified School District College and Career Fair on Wednesday.
The event is set to be held in the Glendale Civic Auditorium from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., with free admission and parking.
“Our target audience is the student body and their parents and it doesn’t matter age-wise,” Felix Melendez, Glendale Unified’s executive director of secondary education, said. “Parents are encouraged to attend because they have [free application for federal student aid] workshops and things like that. Any parent can learn something, and any kid can learn something.”
Though the event is geared specifically for district students, Melendez said that those who attend outside schools are welcome.
Last year’s event drew about 600 participants. Narineh Makijan, the district’s career and technical education coordinator, said the number of attendees was likely affected by the date it was held — Oct. 25 — because the Los Angeles Dodgers were playing at home in Game 2 of the World Series that night.
“This year’s date is earlier than last year’s, which was on an important game night,” Makijan said. “So, we missed a lot of people who watched the game. We’re hoping to have a lot more of our families and students join us.”
Makijan confirmed there will be representatives from more than 100 colleges, universities and career services available. Many of the Cal State and University of California schools along with USC, Harvard and Glendale Community College will be present.
The district also plans to highlight its career-technology education opportunities, which include Clark Magnet High’s advanced manufacturing and engineering program, sports medicine and therapy at Crescenta Valley High, Glendale High’s cosmetology program, culinary arts at Hoover High and Daily High’s barbering program.
Makijan added that if a student decides to go into the armed services or directly into the workforce, there’s still value in attending the event.
“There are plenty of career options,” she said. “There’s military present, fire and police, lifeguards and vocational nursing.”
One of the fair’s perks is a pair of financial-aid seminars provided by Glendale Community College, one at 6 p.m. and the other at 7 p.m.
“High-schoolers are faced with a lot of new ideas and new requirements when they exit high school because it’s the first time they’ll have to pay for education, for the most part,” said Christina Tangalakis, Glendale Community College’s associate dean of financial aid. “They need orientation and guidance on how to access funds to pay for college, and they need to be thinking about what they can afford.”