Stanhope - SNAKES ALIVE! "Career Day at Valley Road School in Stanhope is a big successssss."Students saw a live snake and turtles at a career booth set up by Hunter Space of Space Farms last Friday, as students heard, first hand, about what it takes to be a zookeeper. "Mr. Space" was happy to accept an invitation from his cousin, 2nd-grade teacher Meghan Jaust. In addition to a zookeeper, the school welcomed parents and friends of Valley Road School students and staff to present their experience and career path to the children in kindergarten through 8th grade. The students were treated to fitness demonstrations and health information by Holly Nikituk and learned about building a business in fitness from Lois Marchitto.Students enjoyed milling grain into flour in a portable old-time mill brought by presenter Samantha Hartford of the Cooper Gristmill in Chester, part of the Morris County Parks Commission, and they had a chance to say, "hello" to former Superintendent Tim Nicinski, Pastor of Waterloo United Methodist Church, Chaplain at Centenary University, and friend of Valley Road School.The Sussex Miners’ Alex Kasmann and One World Observatory’s Dave King told students about careers in sales, while some of our children also learned about setting financial goals, placing values on chores and how to save money from Dean Slater. Upon entering the gym, students first saw a pilot's suit on display, courtesy of American Airlines pilot and former fighter pilot Edward Geueke, grandparent of two students and father of staff member Mary-Elizabeth Clauson. He was positioned next to Jamila Tunde, recruiter for Ronetco Supermarkets (ShopRite), who handed out flyers on all the possible careers one can pursue working at ShopRite. Students then moved on to demonstrations of physical therapy, using the various devices, such as crutches and walkers employed by professionals Michelle Anderson and Nicole Gullota. They were also fortunate to have two occupational therapists engaging students: Leslie Salmon and Christine Neid. The school was pleased to welcome back several presenters who previously participated: Kelly Eller, an IT/Data Center specialist, her aunt, Kathy Campbell, RN, and forensic psychologist, Dr. Rana DeGil. Each of these presenters engaged students in meaningful ways and got them thinking about what they might want to do in the future.Not only did the students learn about new jobs and how achieve career goals, the presenters themselves enjoyed visiting with each other and with school staff, promising to return for future Career Days. Superintendent, Steve Hagemann visited each presenter, making sure to stop by and talk about his own favorite past time at the Sussex Miners table. “We are so very grateful for all our volunteer presenters," Hagemann said. "They were all so engaging with our students, who were excited to participate and learn about various career options in their very promising future. Career Day is one of our most successful events, and I would be remiss if I didn’t thank Mrs. Cathy Yonki for all her hard work to make this event happen for our school.”School Principal Alicia Finklea-DiCataldo came through several times as well: “What a wonderful event," she said. "It was an honor to have so many professions represented under one roof for our children to be able to experience. You could see the active inquiry and engagement unfolding as students interacted with each participant. Truly, a great learning experience.”Valley Road School has hosted a Career Day event for students since 2016 and plans to continue doing so for the foreseeable future.