8th grade students glimpse career possibilities at Plant Vogtle tour

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"I'm very excited," said 8th grade student Katheryn Folger. "I love learning about new stuff and putting it in my mind. And, it's a great experience."

Katheryn is talking about her school visit to Plant Vogtle.

She's among 50 eighth graders from Lakeside Middle School taking an advanced math course for high school credit who had the privilege of a lecture and tour at the nuclear plant.

"The generator and how it attracts--we're learning about that now so it's really good,"she said.

Another reason for the visit--to recognize a nationally designated week of science.

"This is part of the National Nuclear Science week," said Mike McCrackennd, communications supervisor at Plant Vogtle."It's a great opportunity to show what we do here at Plant Vogtle. We make a lot of electricity. In fact, we make enough for about 20 percent of the state of Georgia."

"A lot of emphasis is being placed on the type of future in this industry that some of these advanced math students could have.

"We need young people to come into our workforce," said McCracken. " So in 5, 10, 15 years when they finish their education [and] get some experience, some of them would be very good employees for us."

McCracken has been in the industry for 20 years now.

He says site visits like this one helped him take an interest in the field.

"It's a great mix of technology and environment and education and communications and" e have a couple thousand people working here and we're going to be hiring hundreds and hundreds more over the next few years," he said.

An option Kathryn tells me she's considering.

"I think it's great. We're growing and as we go through high school more jobs are going to open up," she said.

Officials tell me a large part of the reason jobs will open up over the next 5 to 10 years is because of the two new nuclear plants being built, which will be in commercial use in 2017 or 2018.

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