BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Thousands of eighth graders across South Mississippi went on the hunt for information about their future careers. On Wednesday, the students flocked to the Coast Convention Center for the Pathways2Possibilities Expo.
The Agriculture station, where students can grow a garden in a glove, drew quite a crowd. This year, the exhibit added more live animals, like cows, pigs, and sheep.
"It was fun to see different animals. I've known about them, but I've never got to see them face to face," said Laniya Kelly-Williams, an eighth grader at North Gulfport Eighth Grade School.
Agriculture, Energy, Health, and Marine Sciences were among 19 career clusters at the P2P Expo in Biloxi. About 150 companies participated in the event this year.
Eighth graders from Greene and Perry Counties also joined the expo, bringing the number of students close to 7,000.
"It's really cool to show these kids the possibilities they can do with jobs and careers in agriculture, especially tied to these animals," added MSU Extension Agent Brad Jones.
Students event got a chance to see themselves on TV at a miniature WLOX studio. Some students tried folding fancy table napkins with help from professionals in the hospitality industry. In the energy pathway, students learned why bubbles instantly pop on their bare hands, but, not on a clean glove.
"It's showing me the things that I could do in the future, like, it's showing me what I want to do and what I don't want to do," said Dwight Lett, an eighth grader at Magnolia Middle School.
The goal of the two-day expo is to spark an interest in careers before the students get to high school. A group of at-risk young people, ages 16 to 24, also took part in the event.
On Thursday, another group of 3,500 eighth graders will get to experience the expo.