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Halifax County Schools recently took a group of students on a trip to Google’s Durham headquarters. 

The trip was organized to expose the students to the world of technology and inspire them to pursue careers. 

“Google has long been recognized as a leader in the tech industry, and the students were excited to see what the company had to offer,” the school system said. 

The group was also allowed to meet with employees and learn about their experiences working. "Google is proud to call North Carolina home to our Durham office and our data center in Lenoir,” said Lilyn Hester, head of southeast  external affairs and government relations. “As an extension of our presence in the state, we work to provide insight and encouragement to those who use our tools and products and who hope to one day be a part of the team that built them. We were excited to have had Halifax County students participate in our office visit and learn about the many careers available to them in STEM fields."

The visit to Google was part of Halifax County Schools’ efforts to provide students access to educational opportunities outside of the traditional classroom setting. “By exposing students to real-world experiences and encouraging them to explore their interests, the school system hopes to inspire the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs,” the school system said. The students who participated in the trip were selected based on their interest in technology and their potential to become field leaders. 

Several teachers accompanied them, and administrators provided guidance and support throughout the visit. 

Aysha Asmedh, a systems engineer, said, “This trip will initiate many thought processes and directions. It is great exposure for the kids, which encourages students and provides them with better direction as well as a more complex understanding.”

Superintendent Eric Cunningham said, “As I observed our students on the field trip to Google, it confirmed that rigor and relevance are essential to their education. The innovative and dynamic environment at Google showed our students how to apply what they are learning in the classroom to real-world situations.”

Cunningham said, “This experience reinforced the value of providing our students with a curriculum that challenges them and prepares them for success in the future." 

The students also learned about the different educational paths that can lead to these jobs. For example, a software engineer might need a bachelor's degree in computer science, while a data scientist might need a master's degree in statistics or mathematics. 

LaVonne McClain, director of CTE and secondary education, said, “Representation matters in high-demand industries. Our students were able to speak with panelists with similar backgrounds as their own who are thriving in STEM and business careers.”