Hey everyone! My name is Deepthi Samarasinghe and I am a Grade 10 student at Garth Webb Secondary School. Today I got the amazing opportunity to take part in the National High School Business Conference. Here are my thoughts highlighting what I learned about CPA.
I went into the conference with little knowledge of Illuminate Universe's work and learning style, I expected far less than what had been presented today. Jodi Buckley gave us an exceptional dive into accounting and opened my eyes to the edge most employers are digging for. I took away the importance of soft skills in the working environment, without prominent traits of a leader and communicator, your academic advantages will seem shallow. As a curious high school student, I found the advice I was given to be crucial in my journey of discovering my post-secondary pathway. I've been quite concerned about choosing which field I'll go into, but this conference made me realize how many opportunities I have access to in business and it allowed me to have some clarity.
One of my favourite parts of the conference was when the university students took the spotlight while sharing their experiences and challenges in the transition from high school to university. They brought up procrastination and other issues that I face constantly, having the ability to connect with a speaker felt very assuring especially because I feel clueless when it comes to post-secondary. The workshops were organized and interesting, learning about mental exercises was a refreshing switch from all the business talk!
My team and I attempted the competition for our first time and it was certainly an eye-opener. Our biggest challenge was having to rush our work to fit the time frame, a lot of problem-solving was done but our final presentation could've definitely been improved. Although we didn't win, I'm really proud of what we accomplished individually and as innovative collaborators, I also congratulate the winners as their presentations were phenomenal.
The conference has helped me not only as a high school student but a future businesswoman, I had a lot of fun and I'd recommend this to anyone searching for a way to expand their bubble in high school.