College fair

Students listen to a presentation from a representative of Walla Walla Community College's John Deere program.

About 300 local students and families packed the halls and classrooms of Quincy Middle School Thursday evening for the Quincy School District’s fifth college fair.

Representatives from eight schools around the state gave informational presentations for attendees considering their post-secondary options. The eight schools included four-year universities like Eastern Washington University and Central Washington University, as well as two-year and technical colleges such as Wenatchee Valley College, Walla Walla Community College and Perry Technical Institute, among others.

New to the event this year were WWCC’s John Deere technical program, as well as Western Washington University. Washington State University and the University of Washington were scheduled to appear, but cancelled prior to the event.

“We were excited that we had (the) John Deere technical program there,” said Katia Perez, Quincy School District Parent Engagement Coordinator and an organizer of the fair. “Just giving them an alternative to the four-year bachelor’s degree.”

The purpose of the event was to give students some exposure to colleges and programs they don’t consider as a first choice, Perez said. Not only was the information valuable for the students, but also the parents, who don’t get exposed to this information the way students do in school.

“I think it was a great opportunity for parents to go and see,” Perez said. “This was nice to have them be able to bring their families.”

The fair was divided into four sessions each lasting about 30 minutes, allowing participants to learn about four different schools if they chose. Students and parents were encouraged to attend a financial aid presentation for at least one session, Perez said.

“They talked about deadlines, how to apply, what you need to do to apply, and it’s a whole lot,” she said. “We try to encourage them to just sit in and maybe get an idea of what they might have to put in and just even what they can actually receive.”

Perez, along with a team including Quincy Middle School Principal Scott Ramsey, Vice Principal Phillip Averill and others organized the event.