East Bay Regional Park Youth Job Fair

IMG_1386.JPGBy Angela L.

This past Saturday, I attended the youth job fair held by East Bay Regional Park. Although I had the intention to go there to explore future opportunities in jobs (post-grad) I quickly realized that I was wrong. The fair was directed towards teen internships and entry-level jobs. Nevertheless, I still learned new things, met interesting people, and overall became exposed to the huge variety of positions that the park offers.

Each station at the fair offered explanations, salaries, calendars, and descriptions of each of their jobs. Some station examples included park ranger jobs, recreation leaders, lifeguards, police, human resource interns, student aids, etc. Each representative delivered wonderful testimonies on their experience and advocated for us all to apply for certain positions. I was amazed when the park ranger told me that in the past forty years of the history of East Bay Regional Park, there hadn’t been a single lay off. At the volunteer station, I was able to talk to the representative about future events I may be able to coordinate with them about community service opportunities with Sierra Club. They gave me helpful brochures and contact information. I was able to learn a lot about the huge variety of internships and gateways that students are able to take to learn and experience more.

After the job fair, there were workshops in each individual station.
I chose to go to the human resource station, and from there they partnered us all up and taught us how to implement the best interview for a job. Each partner mimicked the role play of either being the interviewer and the interviewee. Overall, I gained experience in practicing my interview skills and my partner was fun and engaging to talk to. I was amused by meeting other people from Richmond who have cousins in Alameda High, whom I know. It’s a small world.

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Through viewing how successful/unsuccessful the event was run, I can see how to improve future events. I believe the park staff were very smart in proving a punch-card, which meant if you visited all the stations you can get a raffle. The raffle allowed possibilities of winning desired prizes such as a north face backpack, camelbak water bottles, and more. This incentive was a great way to get people to stay the entire time until noon. Also, upon walking and signing in, they gave free bags to everyone with a free t shirt and water bottle included. I believe this was a very nice touch and a true representation of the high amount of benefits they offer to their workers, which the park ranger also preached about. Lastly, throughout the entire session, they provided granola bars, oranges, water, and coffee on tables by the walls. Whenever someone desired to have a snack, they were always available. Additionally, I see how it may have been unsuccessful because there was a small awkward slot of between the job fair & the workshop when everybody had already visited all the stations. However, I believe overall it was a very great experience to view all the different jobs, high-spirited and passionate people, and learn a variety of things.

What’s Wrack?

IMG_8323On January 30th, internsĀ from Alameda HS met with interns from San Lorenzo HS, Antioch HS, Skyline HS, Richmond HS, and Pinole Valley HS to learn about Beach Wrack from resident expert Connor Dibble. Connor is pursuing a PhD in coastal ecology from UC Davis and is a great resource for our students interested in the coastal ecosystem we live in.

Beginning with an overview of the coastal ecosystem, we learned about the vast amounts of nutrients that wash ashore from aquatic production, the marine algae or seaweeds we might consider to be more of an eyesore than anything, littering our beaches. However, for shorebirds, and the insects they feed on, these algaes provide the basis of a coastal ecosystem that is dependent on the nutrients originating in theĀ ocean.

IMG_8334Using a datasheet, interns walked the Alameda shoreline looking for clumps of wrack, and investigating what it was comprised of. We were surprised to find not just aquatic algae, but also pieces of terrestrial plants wrapped up, such as cactus, and redwood leaves and cones. Measuring the wrack and recording the number of macro-invertebrates in each pile gave our interns an idea of how important the wrack is to our coastal ecology.