Expo 2017-08-28T13:46:52+00:00

 September 26-27, 2017

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This is not your average career fair. In fact, it’s not a career fair at all.

 SWVA Careers Expo for Youth

As an extension of the United Way of Southwest Virginia Ignite Program, the Careers Expo for Youth will take place on September 26-27, 2017 at the Washington County Fairgrounds. Over 4,000 7th grade students from Southwest Virginia (17 school systems, 46 schools) will participate throughout the course of two days. Students will move through four zones filled with over 75 hands-on activities by regional employers in 16 different career paths.

Our Expo is modeled after similar events across the country. Take a moment to view this video that recaps the 2016 Career Choice, SOVA Youth Expo in Chatham, VA.


An event as big as the Expo needs a lot of volunteers!

Your time and talent will help make this year’s event a success. If you are interested in volunteering at the 2017 Expo, click here to visit the Volunteer Center to view opportunities and sign up by September 12, 2017.

If you have questions about volunteering, email Debby Loggans, Volunteer Center Manager, at dloggans@unitedwayswva.org.



  • Bland County High School
  • Carroll County Middle School
  • Castlewood Elementary School
  • Chilhowie Middle School
  • Coeburn Middle School
  • Council Elementary/Middle School
  • Damascus Middle School
  • Dungannon Intermediate
  • Eastern Elementary/Middle School
  • EB Stanley Middle School
  • Elydale
  • Fries School
  • Ft. Chiswell Middle School
  • Galax Middle School
  • Gate City Middle School
  • Glade Spring Middle School
  • Graham Middle School
  • Grayson Highland
  • Honaker Elementary School
  • Hurley Elementary/Middle School
  • Independence Middle School
  • Jonesville Middle School
  • JW Adams Combined
  • Lebanon Middle School
  • LF Addington Middle School
  • Macy McClaugherty
  • Marion Middle School
  • Narrows Elementary/Middle School
  • Nickelsville Elementary
  • Northwood Middle School
  • Norton Elementary/Middle School
  • Pennington Middle School
  • Richlands Middle School
  • Ridgeview Middle School
  • Riverview Elementary/Middle School
  • Rural Retreat Middle School
  • Rye Cove Intermediate
  • Scott Memorial Middle School
  • St Paul School
  • St. Paul Elementary
  • Swords Creek Elementary School
  • Tazewell Middle School
  • Twin Valley Elementary/Middle School
  • Union Middle School
  • Virginia Middle School
  • Wallace Middle School

If you have questions about participating, email Crystal Breeding, Ignite Program Manager, at cbreeding@unitedwayswva.org to receive more information.



Bill Carrico

Morgan Griffith

Todd Pillion

Israel O’Quinn

Tim Kaine

Jeff Campbell

Mark Warner

Joseph Yost


Our participating employers have a unique opportunity to engage students through conversation and demonstration.

Students will participate in five-minute hands-on activities at employers’ stations. Employers can show them firsthand what it’s like to be a chemical engineer, accountant, IT specialist, social worker, and more. For example, students could be able to:

Climb a utility pole
Try on SWAT gear
Practice CPR and giving shots
Participate in a chemistry experiment
Use a 3-D printer to create a 3-D object

We need your expertise as a Southwest Virginia business!

Setup will begin at the Washington County Fairgrounds in Abingdon, VA on Monday, September 25, 2017 from 12pm-7pm, and the Expo will take place on September 26 and 27 from 8:15am-2:30pm. Don’t miss this opportunity to help prepare students for careers in your industry. If you have questions about participating, email Crystal Breeding, Ignite Program Manager, at cbreeding@unitedwayswva.org to receive more information.

To let us know you’d like to participate as one of dozens of employers, complete this form and send us your $100 fee by before July 21, 2017:

Google Form – Employer Booth Participation Form

[This form is no longer active.]


 If you have questions about the Expo that are not answered on this page, please call Crystal Breeding at 276.525.4073 or email cbreeding@unitedwayswva.org.

 The Bigger Picture

 Operation Tomorrow’s Workforce

There’s a gap between the worlds of learning and work. What are we doing about it?

We – along with dozens of community partners – are addressing the problem through initiative-based community impact: a Leaders’ Breakfast event for area leaders, a Written Series, a Careers Expo for Youth event for students, and a brand new United Way of Southwest Virginia program called Ignite. Click the button below to find out more.

Learn about Operation Tomorrow’s Workforce