Show chil­dren their op­tions

The Advertiser - Careers - - Advice -

TALK­ING to the next gen­er­a­tion of work­ers about the dif­fer­ent kinds of ca­reer paths avail­able is the key to help­ing them turn their in­ter­ests into se­ri­ous op­tions.

That may mean trans­lat­ing what hap­pens in the play­ground into a ca­reer.

This process helped Paul Pearce, 30, to suc­cess in his job as a se­nior sys­tems en­gi­neer at Deep Blue Tech, a sub­sidiary of ASC.

He was en­cour­aged to pur­sue an engi­neer­ing ca­reer be­cause of his in­ter­est in play­ing with Lego and other con­struc­tion toys.

Pearce is now one of 440 in the Ad­van­tage SA Speak­ers in Schools pro­gram, talk­ing to sec­ondary students across SA.

He talks to classes about what engi­neer­ing in­volves to help in­crease the aware­ness about the job.

‘‘ It’s about mak­ing the kids at school aware of what’s out there,’’ he says.

‘‘ When I was at school, I didn’t un­der­stand the pro­fes­sion I do now.’’

Know­ing about a va­ri­ety of ca­reers be­yond fire­fighter and nurse can help students find their path ear­lier and prop­erly tai­lor their stud­ies.

Pearce be­lieves adults can help chil­dren be aware of ca­reer op­tions from a young age by look­ing at their in­ter­ests and sug­gest­ing dif­fer­ent jobs this could re­late to when they grow up.

He says of­ten, af­ter hear­ing one of his talks, students will im­me­di­ately ask how they can gain work ex­pe­ri­ence and for more in­for­ma­tion be­cause they were un­aware of the op­por­tu­ni­ties avail­able to them.

‘‘ They talk about a huge short­age of en­gi­neers in the in­dus­try so it’s good to be able to get a mes­sage where you get paid well, there’s plenty of choice and op­por­tu­ni­ties,’’ Pearce says.

SELL­ING A CA­REER: En­gi­neer Paul Pearce speaks with high school stu­dent Bray­den.

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