Tag Archives: Horsham

Pathways

Pathways to Employment

Navigating a pathway from school into employment can take many turns. This was very much the case for Horsham College student, Grace Christian.

Grace studied Cert II VET (Vocational Education and Training) Hairdressing at Federation University one day per week. She also undertook one day per week of on-the-job structured workplace learning (SWL) in a salon. After wondering if hairdressing was the career path she truly wanted, she tried another work placement in Community Services. At the end of year 11 Grace decided hairdressing was what she really wanted and enrolled in Certificate II Salon Assistant for  her second year VET course.

Many young people do not have a set career path and change their mind many times before they eventually settle into a career. Some students aspire to complete year 12 and head to Uni to further study, some take a GAP year and work to save money or travel and some participate in a VCAL (Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning) course during their VCE years and do on the job training and gain industry experience to find their passion. This can then lead to apprenticeships, traineeships or employment.

In year 12 Grace commenced a work placement at Sirs and Hers Hair studio, which has now had a revamp and name change to George and Co. After only two weeks into her placement, an apprenticeship became available and Grace threw her hat in the ring. “I wanted to finish year 12 but I was really enjoying my time in the salon and my dad was really supportive of me leaving school for an apprenticeship”.

Owner of George and Co, Michelle Shanks, offered Grace a two-week full-time trial to ensure leaving school was the right decisions. “I didn’t want to stop Grace from completing year 12, I wanted her to make sure this was what she truly wanted”. “Grace is so mature for her age and she reminds me of myself. She has great work ethic and fits in with the team here at George and Co”. Grace was offered the position and is now employed full time as a first-year apprentice.

Reception duties, smiling and greeting the clients that come into the salon, learning the product range, washing hair, general cleaning duties and helping assist other stylists apply colour are all tasks Grace is learning while on the job. “I have a passion for creative colour, I would like to specialise in colour when I qualify. I really enjoy working with the staff here. They are so friendly and willing to share their knowledge with me”.

Grace will be required to attended trade school as part of her apprenticeship. There is still some discussion as to where that will be but Geelong is looking promising. When asked if there were any things she found challenging, Grace replied, “Being independent and doing it on my own. I’ve never had to stay away from home before, but it will be a great learning curve for me”.

What a great outcome for Grace, exploring opportunities offered through her VCAL Program at Horsham College to help shape a positive career path locally.

For any further information on VET courses offered or Structured Workplace Learning opportunities, contact Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN on 53810122

CramerLucky

Talk About Lucky

Lauchlan McKean, Lucky to his mates, has had a cracking start to 2016 securing a full-time apprenticeship with Mick Cramer Smash Repairs.

Lauchlan enrolled in the VET in Schools Cert II Automotive program in 2015 through Skillinvest, as part of his VCAL qualification through Horsham College. During his work placement Lauchlan was able to demonstrate some of the basic skills he had learned in his VET course, a good attitude to work and an ability to follow instructions and work well with others. This resulted in Lauchlan successfully securing a school-based apprenticeship, leading to a full apprenticeship in 2016.

“I never pass up opportunities for work. I just tried to get into the work force a lot quicker because I couldn’t handle school. I found it really stressful, but at least here, we’re all free and get to do our own thing,” Lauchlan said.

“I’d never even thought about being a spray painter. I wanted to do automotive and work on light vehicles, Genni Smith from school said I should suss out my options and see what’s around.” Lauchlan said that within a couple of weeks, he loved it. “It’s hard work, but at the same time it’s part of the job, you’ve got to suck it up and do it and the guys around here make it enjoyable. Mick’s a really good boss, but you’ve got to get the job done right. He’s willing to teach you if you want to learn. You have to listen and take in what he’s saying, if you’re not going to show him that you want to listen then he’s just not going to bother trying to teach you. I’ve learnt a lot from Mick himself, by showing him that I’m listening, I’m dedicated and I want to learn.”

Mick loves having Lauchlan as part of his team “I personally believe youth are the future, therefore they must have a chance to create,’ Mick said. “School based apprenticeships are a great way for the employer to have a good look at the possible future employee and vice versa. It gives the student a chance to have a good look at the trade.”

Lauchlan said he had learnt a variety of skills “Even the way I sweep floors or wash cars, has all changed,” he said. “You surprise yourself with how much you learn. I got to spray paint my first couple of things the other week. I painted Mick’s bird aviary for him and did all the preparation. I painted the door of my first car recently. They’ve taught me how I should be standing, how far away I should be holding everything and the speeds and how loose my body should be. To pull off the perfect job, you have to get all of that perfect.”

“Attention to detail is really important to us, so if your car is wrecked, come to Mick Cramer’s and we’ll fix it for ya!”

Interested in finding out how your business can benefit from hosting a student on work placement? Call Melissa at Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN on Ph: 5381 0122.