Category Archives: Juniors

AOIT Networking event

Written by Rachel McKinney// Apex High AOIT class of 2016

Networking– to further one’s career by interacting with other people to exchange information and develop contacts.

Doesn’t sound like something teenagers are doing? Think again. Last Thursday, AOIT juniors were in the Apex High Media Center networking with small business owners who are offering paid summer internships to students. It may seem like a strange sight seeing so many teens dressed in business professional clothes, shaking hands with potential employers, and exchanging business cards, but the Apex Chamber of Commerce Networking Event has become a yearly tradition in Apex High’s nationally distinguished Academy of Information Technology.

Junior year is an exciting time for AOIT students as they begin their search for meaningful internships, and the AOIT class of 2017 is no exception. They are looking forward to gaining real workplace experience through their internships, the annual networking event is the first step towards that. The event is a great way for students to build interpersonal skills by introducing themselves to and interacting with real, professional adults.  AOIT Board member Marcia Murto who attended the event, not only praised student’s professionalism through their business attire, but also “the fact that 5 to 10 minute conversations were taking place, suggesting that real connections were being made.” The annual event is the perfect opportunity to help connect small businesses to young, skilled interns, and vice versa. As Ed Majkowski of Random 434 Boutique said, “we are looking for someone to take us to the next level,” and that is exactly what the networking event aims to accomplish.

Juniors may not yet know where their internship will be, but they are looking forward to finding one. Some have specific fields that they would like their internship to be in, others are just excited for the opportunity to gain real world experience and to expand their resumes. “I’m not sure what field I want to go into career wise, so I’m hoping my internship will help me figure that out,” says AOIT junior Angela Schulze at the networking event. Seniors who have already gone through the intern experience were also at the event to talk about their internships. Dhvani Bhatia, an AOIT senior who interned at SAS attended the event to give advice and insight into what an internship is like, gushed to the juniors about how she “learned more in her internship than she ever did in all of high school.” Juniors can expect to learn applicable, real world skills no matter where their internship may be, and the networking event is the first step towards getting that internship

This year’s Apex Chamber of Commerce Networking event was another success for AOIT, and we can’t wait to hear about the experiences the juniors have this summer at their internships!

Check out this video for a firsthand experience of the event:


Mock Interviews for Juniors

Class of 2017:

You all should be aware by now that you have mock interviews coming up on Thursday November 5th.  The interviews will be with our Advisory Board members.  Many of the interviewers are the same people reviewing your resumes.  The interviews will be in the Media Center starting at 7:40 AM.  Make sure you know your time. You can check the schedule here. You should arrive at the Media Center 5 minutes before your appointed time.  These interviews are required by every junior in the academy.

what to wearBusiness attire is the required dress for the interviews.  Gentlemen: this means a button down shirt, dress pants and a tie at the minimum.  You should were a sports coat or suit if you have one.  Ladies: this means a business suit, conservative dress, or skirt and blouse.  Remember, you are going on a job interview not out to a club. You may click on the “dress for success” image at left for a reference.  See me if you have any questions.

Here are a few interview questions for you to review. I highly recommend that you practice answering these questions.  Get a friend or parent to practice with you. Please keep in mind that the advisory board members enjoy doing this activity with you.  They genuinely want to help you get better at interviewing.  They are not there to trip you up or intimidate you.  Enjoy this opportunity for the great learning experience that it is.

Again, if you have any questions please let me know.

Mr. Evans

Online Payment for 2015-2016 School Year

The AoIT program will move to completely online payments for the 2015-2016 school year.  More information will be shared by Mr. Evans at the parent orientation meeting on Wednesday.  Payments and donations are handled through the AoIT program’s PayPal account.  Don’t worry if you don’t have a PayPal account, you can pay with your credit card.

When your done adding items to your cart, click the checkout button which will take you a view of your cart.  Verify your contents then at the bottom choose “Proceed to PayPal” which is the only option for payment.  AoIT is no longer accepting checks or cash beginning this school year.



You will be taken to the PayPal login screen.  If you don’t have a PayPal account or don’t want to use the balance in your PayPal account, click on the link circled in green in the image below.  If you would prefer to use  your existing PayPal balance (which is ok) login to PayPal as you normally would using the values inside the red box noted in the image below.



If you have any questions, feel free to contact AoIT at

Note to Junior Parents

February 12, 2015 : AOIT Junior Parent Notes

I wanted to follow up on the information you received at last November’s Pre-internship meeting.  Hopefully you have been able to talk with your AOIT student about his or her interests in completing the required internship.  This letter will serve as a next step/how to guide to assist you and your student in the process of securing and successfully completing the internship.

As a reminder, in order to graduate with AOIT honors, your student must complete a “technology-based” internship by May of his or her senior year.  The internship must consist of a minimum of 135 hours and be approved by me.  All juniors received a packet of information at the Internship Presentation.  If you do not have the packet it can be downloaded from the AOIT website.

There are 90 juniors looking for internships.  The AOIT program, with the assistance of the Advisory Board, is usually able to provide about 50% of those internship opportunities.  Through networking on the part of other parents and Advisory Board members, a number of opportunities at local companies have been identified.  The AOIT program, and Advisory Board members, contact past participants to solicit internship positions from those companies.  However, your help as parents is requested to identify and secure additional opportunities and, as a byproduct, teach an important life lesson to your student.  In the workforce, the best way to secure a job is through networking.  The sooner students learn this principle, the better off they will be as they look to find future opportunities both from an educational and professional standpoint.  Here are a few basic steps to start the process:

  1. If your student currently has a job, talk to him or her about whether or not the job could be turned into an “internship” opportunity.  If so, please contact me so that I can work with your student to classify it properly.  If your student is contemplating a part-time job, your student should consider choosing a job that could serve as both an internship experience and a part-time job.
  1. If your student currently does not have a job, or a job that would qualify as an internship, talk to your student to figure out what interests him or her.  One of the purposes of the internship is to give the students a taste of what a job would be like in a particular discipline.  Your student may decide that what he or she originally anticipated to be exciting, is not what they anticipated.  Discussing interests with your student will allow them to start the process of narrowing interests.  This exercise may turn out to be an excellent opportunity for your student with his or her decision on a college major.  Another important life lesson sometimes learned through the internship experience is that we need to complete jobs that we do not necessarily enjoy.   Please discuss this possibility with your student.
  1. Have your student do a LinkedIn search on companies in The Triangle area that fit into his or her category of interests.  This tool will be very helpful for your student as he or she looks to further network.
  1. Talk with your neighbors and friends about where they work and do a LinkedIn search yourself for contacts you may have at some of the companies your student has identified.  You could send an email out to your LinkedIn connections soliciting help in identifying leads.  Many neighborhoods have email groups where you could post a message in order to solicit help from neighbors.  Chances are that you are not the only one in your neighborhood with an AOIT student.
  1. Together with your student, reach out to your connections to understand the process of obtaining an internship at the desired company.  If you do not feel comfortable contacting the company directly, please contact me and either one of the Advisory Board members, or I, can make contact on your behalf.  Of course, this process may need to be repeated a few times before an internship position can be secured.

Whether an internship opportunity is identified through the AOIT program, the Advisory Board, or by you or your student, your student will still need to interview for the internship position.  Just because an internship opportunity has been identified, this may not guarantee it will be secured by your student.  For example, many of the internship opportunities provided by SAS, as well as other companies, are very competitive.  The AOIT program has been preparing, and continues to prepare, your student for the interview process so that he or she will be at his or her best during the interview process.

After the internship position has been secured, your child will work with me to complete necessary forms and coordinate the internship dates.

If you would like additional information please reference the internship information on our website:

If you have additional questions or would like to speak with one of the Advisory Board members, please contact me and I will be happy to assist and support you through the process.  I look forward to attending your student’s AOIT senior presentation about his or her internship experience. I have complete confidence this experience will assist in preparing your student for college and the job market.