The 2024 Regional Career Fair concluded yesterday, marking a successful 20th event that provided over 270 high school students from 11 different schools with valuable insights into various career paths and educational opportunities. Organized by the Southeast Enterprise Facilitation Project (SEFP), the fair featured engaging activities, workshops, and presentations aimed at inspiring students to explore their future prospects.

The day began with a special address from Miranda O’Bryan, the current Miss South Dakota, who shared her journey in navigating school opportunities and career choices. O’Bryan’s encouraging words set the tone for the event, inspiring students to embrace new experiences and pursue their passions.

In addition to O’Bryan’s speech, students had the opportunity to engage with booth presenters, participate in mock job interviews, and attend workshops on the StartTodaySD Apprenticeship program. Throughout the fair, there was a palpable sense of enthusiasm as students interacted with professionals from various fields and learned about potential career paths.

A highlight of this year’s fair was the addition of an essay contest, which challenged students to think critically about their communities, businesses, and potential entrepreneurship ventures. Students were tasked with writing an essay about starting a business in their town, detailing the reasons behind their choice, the potential impact on the community, and the initial steps they would take to get started.

“We were thrilled by the response to the essay contest,” said Heather Broehm, SEFP Facilitator and organizer of the event. “It was inspiring to see students’ creativity and entrepreneurial spirit on display.”

The cash prize winners for the essay contest were announced at the fair, with Hailey Orr of IWHS, Sierra McGregor of Canistota HS, and Wyatt Hoxeng of IWHS taking home the top honors. Their thoughtful essays demonstrated a deep understanding of the importance of entrepreneurship and its potential to positively impact their communities.

As the event concluded, schools departed, having gained valuable insights and inspiration for their future endeavors. “We’re grateful to all the schools, exhibitors, and volunteers who helped make this event a success. I am especially thankful to the Bridgewater Emery School Districts and their leadership for being this year’s event host.” said Heather. “It was a fantastic day filled with learning and exploration.”

Extended Press Release:

A personal thank you from SEFP to all who helped make this year a success. The students that attended this year’s fair were from the following high schools: Bridgewater-Emery, Canistota, Centerville, Freeman Public, Montrose,  Irene-Wakonda, McCook Central, Marion, Menno, Parker, and Viborg-Hurley.  Thank you to all the educators and administration that planned and prepared their students for this year’s event. With 270 students, that is not an easy ask or task. 

A very special thank you to Bridgewater Emery School’s Christena Schultz, HS Principal for her assistance in organizing and hosting the event. Thank you to the high school staff and students who assisted with the setup and tear-down of the gym. Lastly, thank you BE School’s Kitchen staff for the delicious rolls provided for the fair volunteers, booth presenters, and school educators.

Also, thank you to Deanna Gall and the SDSU Extension team, SEFP Board Members, Dr. Mary Langrock, Jeannette Grady, and Jackie Lukes who assisted with the student’s mock interviews. You made a lasting impact and impression on the students you interviewed, setting them up for future success by giving of your time. 

Thank you to Miranda O’Bryan, our current Miss South Dakota, for coming across the state to share an inspiring message to our youth. You engaged and connected with so many students and represent the career possibilities our wonderful state has.

Lastly, I would like to thank the 29 colleges and businesses that sponsored a booth and took the time to share with our area students. You are who the students come to engage and learn from, and this year you knocked it out of the park!


SEFP is hiring!

  OPENING FOR ENTERPRISE FACILITATOR Southeast Enterprise Facilitation Project (SEFP), a non-profit 501(c)3 seeks a highly self-motivated individual to assist new, expanding and/or retained businesses.  This is a full-time position. The Enterprise Facilitator...

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