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New Salem - December 24, 2008

Counselor’s Corner

© 2008 Dr. Gaylynn Becker
National Certified Career Counselor
National Certified School Counselor
New Salem High School

In December Karl Becker (computer engineer for Rockwell Collins in Cedar Rapids, Iowa) presented in some of Mrs. Holly Wardzinski’s morning math classes. In my last article I wrote about his work as a computer engineer. Karl also spoke about having one’s own business. I thought the article was too long so I broke it into 2 articles (computer engineering and entrepreneurship).
Karl was interested in and liked computers since he was 4 years old. He explained how he started his own business (KB Productions) in 4th grade. He made various publications and fixed computers that had software problems. In 6th grade he made his first web page for money. In 7th grade he sold his first video game, “The Fishin’ Hole,” on the Internet through a company out of California. “The Fishin’ Hole” worked on both Mac and Windows platforms. He learned this by reading books on programming, talking to others and working on the computer.
KB Productions latest program is “Car Care.” This is an iPhone application for recording fuel efficiency records, car maintenance reminders, and care for your entire fleet of vehicles. It also helps keep track of auto expenses for tax purposes.
Karl encourages students to pursue their career aspirations by doing well in school and life. Taking courses related to your career while in high school and earning good grades are very important. Do career planning by relating your interests and what you are good at to your career plans. He also said that “While holding down the couch and playing video games may be what one is good at, they don’t pay very well.”
He also encourages students to do something extra to give themselves an edge now in whatever their chosen occupation. Students can either get a part time job in that career field or learn all that you can about that career. The key thing is to do things now that will help you later. Don’t take a job just because of the pay. Look for a job that is related to what you think you want to do so that you can be better at that than the other applicants. That is having an edge.

Thanks to Karl Becker and other career speakers for taking vacation time to come to New Salem High School to provide some career insights and information for interested students. Also, thanks to Mrs. Holly Wardzinski for allowing Karl to speak to her students in some of her classes.

Student Exchange Program
I received information in my office concerning the Congress Bundestag Youth Exchange Program. This is a grant for youth to study in Germany. For more information stop by my office; call (800) 333-3802 x 280 or visit

Energy Generation Conference
The 30th annual Energy Generation Conference is being held at the Bismarck Civic Center on January 28-29, 2009. Adults can attend for $ 30.00 a day. For more information go to New Salem High School can send 1 or 2 students at no charge provided a student completes the application form and give it to either Mr. Bruce Schumacher or me prior to the 25 statewide slots being filled. My next day in New Salem is January 6th.

Military Academy
I’ve just received information concerning the United State Military Academy Summer Leaders Seminar at West Point. The sessions run for one week in June. For more information go to or stop by my office. The application deadline is April 1, 2009.

Merry Christmas!
I hope all of the students and staff at New Salem High School have a great Christmas break. It has been a long grind for many of the students who have worked very diligently at their academics, extra curricular activities, and jobs!

If you have any questions on careers, counseling, or assessment topics, please contact me at either New Salem High School at 843-7610, or at my residence at 222-3222.