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PBHS hosts Future Ready Fair

PHILIPPI — Philip Barbour High School hosted a Future Ready Fair recently while inviting colleges, trade schools and the United States military to the Colts’ Corral to offer students a variety of future options.

“I would love to take credit for the idea, but it was given to me by our counselor, Kim Burnett, who did all of the heavy lifting, and Jennifer Wotring of the Family Engagement Center, a grant initiative from WVDE and the Edventure Group,” Philip Barbour High School principal Brandon Antion said.

“We are considering having a second event in the spring for our friends in business and senior students closer to graduation and for our junior students to spend a little time getting to know what the local post-secondary institutions have to offer,” said Antion.

Post-secondary recruiters attending included Alderson Broaddus University, Davis & Elkins College, West Virginia Wesleyan College, Salem International University, University of Charleston, Concord University, West Liberty University and the Fred Eberle Technical Center located in Buckannon.

Antion mentioned the seminars group that included Heart & Hand’s dress for success and Christina Mellinger, who gave free haircuts to any student or parent with a job or college interview.

The Home Ownership Center of Randolph County offered financial planning advice. Randolph County WORK (YouthBuild), and the ABU financial aid office also participated.

Employers attending the fair included New Vision, Mace’s Pharmacy, Barbour County Community Health, Broaddus Hospital, Shop N Save, Huttonsville Correction Center, Leer South Coal, Coastal Drilling, and Walmart.

The United States Navy also had a table set up in the PB commons area.

Antion, a seasoned educator and Morgantown native, is familiar with the landscape of the region.

“If you spend enough time in education, you begin to see your students go on to a number of different career paths and realize that we can’t treat education as one size fits all,” he said.

“Our goal is to have every student prepared for and capable of receiving a college education, but college isn’t always the path to his or her chosen career. Because of this, I think it’s important to give opportunities for exploration in a variety of areas,” Antion said.

Antion has worked in education and sports in Barbour County since 2013. He had a suggestion for a new display in PBHS, a consolidated high school that brought Barbour County high schools Kasson, Belington and Philippi together to form PBHS in the early 1960s.

“I’m looking for donations of letterman’s sweaters from Kasson, Belington, and Philippi high schools as well as an early Philip Barbour one for display at the entrance,” he said.

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