For a middle schooler, the ups and downs of teenage life seem to be everything around which life revolves. But for a few hours on Wednesday afternoon March 18, some grown up volunteers tried to share a little perspective with Wilton’s Middlebrook students on what life can hold after they grow up.

More than 60 Wilton professionals shared stories of their jobs and careers at the school’s annual Career Awareness Day, a program sponsored by the Wilton Education Foundation that gives the teens a small peek into what kinds of career options exist for them when they enter the working world. Each of the students attended four 25-minute breakout sessions with different grown ups to hear about what those adults do for a living.

“These are the experiences the kids will carry with them. You never know, you can have a kid in front of you today for whom you spark and interest or introduce a future passion,” superintendent Kevin Smith told the parents who volunteered to talk to the kids about their jobs.

GOOD Morning Wilton‘s editor and publisher had the opportunity to talk to three groups of students about what was involved in running a daily news website and what kind of career path it took to get to this point. At the end each of the GMW sessions, the students then had the chance to collaborate on a brief account of what the day was all about. Those stories written by the students (session 1, session 2 and session 3) were posted live onto before the school’s final dismissal bell rang on Wednesday afternoon.

A wide variety of professionals spoke to the students, incuding a Wilton police officer, a TV producer from ESPN, a physician, a personal trainer, a Wilton EMT, an advertising executive, a magazine editor, a cafe owner, a New York Times reporter, an architect, and Chilean consul, a clothing stylist, and so many more interesting folks.

For some of the kids, the day was eye-opening. “It’s enlightening to experience others’ experiences about their workplaces,” said Zoey Weiss, an eighth grader.

But for others, the glance at the real world seemed slightly daunting. “It’s overwhelming that all these other doors are open and they all sound really cool. Then you look at all the education that it took, and it seems like it takes a lot of work to get there someday,” said Ainsley Kohler, an eighth grader.