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December 8, 2016

Newton College and Career Academy hosted its annual Networking Luncheon with over 50 evaluators representing businesses, non-profits and educational professionals from the community on Wednesday, November 30.

“Students who participated were required to wear business professional dress and treat the event as a mock interview luncheon,” said Debra Lary, NCCA Work-Based Learning Coordinator.  “Since the beginning of the school year, the students have learned about professional soft skills such as eye contact, a strong handshake, business ‘small talk’, and active listening.”

Lary added, “The students were reminded to turn their phones off and really engage in conversation with their guests.” 

The Networking Luncheon comprised of 4 lunch periods and included one adult with five students per table.

According to Lary, each adult was provided a card with generic interview questions to help guide discussion at the tables. Questions included:

  • What is your favorite subject at school, and why?
  • What are your short term and long term goals?
  • What school activities do you participate in?
  • What are your strengths?
  • What personal characteristics do you feel are necessary for success?

After the luncheon, students returned to class and evaluators were then asked to complete a short, feedback form to rate how each student performed during the mock interview.  Students received their results at the end of the week. 

“We encouraged the evaluators to provide a few helpful hints for improvement,” said Lary. “Most of the NCCA students received perfect scores on their feedback forms, which demonstrated they were listening during their soft skills lessons!”

Lary praised the any evaluators who volunteered to participate.

“The event lasted over three hours and some of the evaluators stayed the entire time,” she said. “We are very grateful for their help in training our future workforce.”

Business professionals interested in volunteering to assist or participate in events similar to the NCCA Networking Luncheon should contact Ms. Jill McGiboney by email at or by phone at 678-625-6788.

Organizations Who Volunteered Assistance/Participated in the 2016 NCCA Networking Luncheon include:

  • Gents Grooming Lounge-Porterdale
  • Newton County Special Olympics
  • Newton County School System Central Office Administrators
  • Snapping Shoals EMC
  • Newton County Chamber of Commerce
  • Select Newton
  • Merryvale Assisted Living
  • Newton Citizen
  • Godfreys Feed
  • Bon Appetit Management/Oxford College
  • Piedmont Newton Hospital
  • Locust Grove High School
  • Northeast Georgia Regional Commission
  • Retired Educators
  • Arbor Equity
  • Carmichael Drugs
  • McMichael’s Construction
  • Live Oak Elementary
  • MB Entertainment
  • Infinity Networks
  • Georgia Piedmont Technical College
  • Utica Insurance
  • BB&T Bank
  • Benchmark Physical Therapy
  • Peachtree Academy
  • Fibervisions
  • NCCA Administrators and Staff