Students at Power Center Academy High School in Memphis learn to develop their own brand

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -  Students are often taught about different jobs, but Monday in Hickory Hill,  some students learned first-hand how to land a job.
They had a chance to develop their own brand and see how to use it during interviews.

Ninth grade scholars at Power Center Academy came to school Monday dressed the part and ready for some one-on-one meetings with future employers.

The students had just a few minutes to meet the dozen or so businesses on hand and sell themselves.

"You have to tell people about you. You can't just ... you have to stand out so many people will give you a chance and stuff like that," said ninth-grader Dymond Johnson.

Kimberly Rodriguez, the ninth-grade principal of Power Center Academy, said this is one of three sessions the students have had this year, helping them develop their skills in introducing themselves and touting their attributes.

"The big idea is when they get to the point of getting ready for college, they already have stories. They already have topics for their college essays because they have thought about and grappled with who they are and what their best attributes are," said Rodriguez.

Business leaders were anxious to listen and offer advice.

"Young people need to understand if they are going to make it in this highly competitive work force, you have got to stand out. You have to make your presence known. This is a chance of how we teach people realistically and have businesses evaluate their performance," said Beverly Robertson with TRUST Marketing and Communications.

The students soaked it all up.

"I like I was able to meet people and they can tell me all about their experience and stuff," said 9th grade student Aaron Sewell.

They even questioned WREG's April Thompson about journalism and told her about themselves and their goals.

"My choice is when I graduate to be a veterinarian because I have a profound love for animals," one student said.

"My goal is to make a 4-point-0. Hopefully my goal can get me into my dream college, Rust College. Hopefully they will give me a scholarship so I can major in being a real estate agent," said ninth grader Alexis Marlowe.

For one outstanding student who made direct eye contact, asked follow-up questions and impressed with her presentation.....she now has an opportunity for an internship in Marketing or a chance to work with a traveling nurse, something that peaked this ninth grader's interest.

"I want you to have that because of the great job you did today! Kianna congratulations!" said Robertson, as she presented the ninth grader with a certificate for the internship.

The next step for these ninth graders is learning about their options when it comes to careers in professional sports. Some former pro-athletes will talk with them about why it's always good to have a back up plan.

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