EDUCATION FEATURE: Class teaches career skills

Marshall Junior High School freshman Kyree McField will work at the Rib Crib restaurant this summer. (CNJ staff photo: Eric Kluth)

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer

By Marlena Hartz
For years, Keith Ingram has tried to impart his students with the career skills they need to survive in the workplace. But the Marshall Junior High School careers instructor never imagined his classroom guidance would pay off instantly.
When student Kyree McField participated in a mock interview with a local restaurant manager who visited her class earlier this week, the manager was so impressed she offered the 15-year-old a job on the spot.
“She did all the things you are supposed to do in an interview,” said Rebecca Lane, who manages more than 30 people at the Rib Crib resturaunt in Clovis. “She looked me in the eye and she was honest. She had a lot of personality.”
McField will dive into the working world this summer as a hostess at the restaurant. It will be her first job.

“I was so nervous,” McField said of the mock interview, “I was sweating.”

In contrast to others Lane has interviewed, McField remained calm under pressure, even as her classroom peers watched her every move.
“I laughed at myself even when I made a mistake,” McField said.

She said she learned a lot from the experience.

“I learned what to say when I am under pressure,” McField said.

Not only did McField impress Lane, she also impressed her teacher. In more than a decade of conducting mock interviews in the classroom, Ingram said he has never seen a result quite like this.

“It’s pretty impressive,” Ingram said. “It had to be a pretty scary thing for (McField) to get up in front of the entire class for an interview, but she handled it well.”