reaching high school students

Subject: reaching high school students
From: Melissa Hunter-Kilmer <mhunterk -at- BNA -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 09:16:15 EST

Wayne Douglass <wayned -at- VERITY -dot- COM> wrote:
> Nobody says "I want to be a technical writer when I grow up" either.

David Castro <techwrtr -at- CRL -dot- COM> wrote:
> So he flipped through one of the college books to the majors section
and began reading them off to me. When he got to "Technical &
Professional Writing," I had him read the description to me.

> I was elated! There really was a major that would teach me what I
wanted to do! . . . We need to get out to the high school level, more.
Get STC to set up booths and such.

My daughter is a ninth-grader at a math and science magnet high
school. (For those of you who are not familiar with the U.S. system,
she's 14 years old and has just started high school, which lasts for
four years. After high school, she will go to a college or
university, at her parents' expense.) Not to toot my daughter's horn,
but this school is very, very hard to get into, and its students are
the cream of the crop in an area where excellent students are easy to
find. These kids are bombarded with college and career information
from early on -- probably at home, too.

Naturally, when Meg started at this school, my husband and I got asked
to volunteer six ways to Sunday. One volunteer opportunity is
speaking at the school about one's career; another is speaking to
individual students about it. I signed up for the latter and haven't
heard any more, but hey, it's early in the year yet.

Now I'm thinking I'd like to address a group of students about tech
writing, and I'm going to volunteer to do that. We desperately need
these bright technologically-oriented kids! What do y'all suggest I
tell them? Here are some ideas:

Why tech writing is fun and cool
What skills tech writers use
How to prepare for a career in tech writing
How much tech writers make, in this geographic area and others
Who hires tech writers
Why one would want to be a tech writer rather than a developer

Any other ideas?

Melissa Hunter-Kilmer
mhunterk -at- bna -dot- com
(standard disclaimer)

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