Roosevelt Elementary School Career Day
Connects Students with Professionals

Lynwood – Twenty Roosevelt Elementary School sixth-graders were riveted as the Department of Justice agent pulled an FBI bulletproof vest out of a bag and held it up for all to see. A sea of hands shot up when she asked for a volunteer to try it on.

The agent was one of more than 30 guest speakers to visit 500 students in classrooms across Roosevelt on June 6 for the annual Career Day, an event that also encompasses the District’s two high schools, three middle schools and 11 other elementary schools throughout May and June.

Students heard from a popular children’s book author, an international artist, an actor, a classically trained violinist and former professional basketball players. Speakers discussed careers in graphic arts, art, banking, college athletic administration, dancing, event planning, law, nutrition, public relations and philanthropy.

“We selected a wide variety of guest speakers because we want to encourage our students to begin thinking about career paths now, and to expose them to the wide variety of fields out there,” Principal Sandra Verduzco said.

Students gain first-hand knowledge of career opportunities from industry professionals through Career Days, learning early on what profession might interest them in the future.

Eleazar Quijada, a Roosevelt sixth-grader, received career guidance from an actor, violinist and artist.

“We learned a lot and it was very inspiring,” Eleazar said. “Some kids aren’t sure what they want to do with their lives, so it was good that they had Career Day at our school.”

Vivian Perez, who is also in the sixth grade, always wanted to learn to play the piano and the guitar, but never had the time. Violinist Lee England Jr., known as the “Soul Violinist” and managed under Quincy Jones Productions, may have inspired her to find some.

“He started to learn when he was 6 years old and wanted to quit the day he started,” Vivian said. “His father talked him into playing 15 minutes each day and then he played more and more each day, and that’s why he’s here today. Maybe I can be as successful as he is.”

She added that she is considering going into law enforcement and was impressed with the presentation by Donna Ellsworth of the Justice Department.

“I like watching crime mysteries and Donna Ellsworth works with evidence to help solve crimes,” Vivian said.

Lynwood Unified Superintendent Paul Gothold said the Career Day series is designed to create just that kind of inspiration for all District students.

“With the help of these professionals, we are opening career pathways early on for our children,” Gothold said. “I would like to commend all our campuses for getting such successful groups of professionals to visit our students.”

The presenters, who moved from classroom to classroom at each Career Day, emphasized the need for hard work, self-motivation and setting and following through on goals.

“We want to give our students every opportunity to find something they might be passionate about,” Board President Alma-Delia Renteria said. “It is our mission to ensure every student will be college and career ready, and by giving students insights into the working world, we are one step closer toward attaining our goals.”


CAREERDAY1: Actor and producer Baron Littleton passes out books to sixth-graders during Career Day at Lynwood Unified’s Roosevelt Elementary School on June 6.

CAREERDAY2: Roosevelt Elementary School sixth-grader Valeria Garcia tries on an FBI bulletproof vest on June 6 during a Career Day presentation by agent Donna Ellsworth of the Justice Department.