Get a ca­reer

The Shed - - News - By Sarah Beres­ford

Young stu­dents who might’ve been a bit bored with school and won­dered what rel­e­vance it has for the tran­si­tion to the big wide world of work­ing for a liv­ing got a taste of the sort of ca­reers that are on of­fer dur­ing the re­cent Got a Trade Week.

One stu­dent jumped on a heli­copter for a ride to Clyde Dam and another was taken to look at rally cars. The trade swap helps to make things clearer in terms of how what you’re learn­ing in the class­room may be a gate­way to ex­cit­ing ca­reer op­tions.

The week, or­ga­nized by the In­dus­try Train­ing Fed­er­a­tion (ITF) and held in Au­gust, fo­cused on the im­por­tance of en­cour­ag­ing ed­u­ca­tional path­ways that will pro­vide stu­dents with a sense of pur­pose and di­rec­tion.

The best and bright­est ap­pren­tices in New Zealand were also cel­e­brated at an awards night held as part of the week. “We held a fo­rum ear­lier in the day with the 50 ap­pren­tices who had been nom­i­nated by their In­dus­try Train­ing Or­gan­i­sa­tions [ITOs] and that was re­ally ex­cit­ing,” said Josh Wil­liams, chief ex­ec­u­tive of the ITF. “The awards had an awe­some vibe and was hosted by In­dus­try Train­ing Min­is­ter Louise Up­ton. We wanted to rec­og­nize ex­cel­lence in busi­ness man­age­ment and lead­er­ship in young ap­pren­tices who are go­ing through the sys­tem. It’s of­ten dif­fi­cult for stu­dents to re­late to peo­ple who have al­ready ‘made it’ so we wanted to high­light the sto­ries of some young peo­ple who were in the process of gain­ing skills. We thought [that] stu­dents would be in­spired by some­one who was only two or three years up the chain. It’s more re­lat­able.”

This is the cam­paign’s third year and for the first time a School of the Year award was also pre­sented as a way of show­cas­ing some of the ways ed­u­ca­tors could pro­mote a range of path­ways to

fu­ture ca­reers other than go­ing down the route to univer­sity.

“Seven out of 10 school-leavers don’t go to uni, so it’s in­cred­i­bly im­por­tant that stu­dents re­al­ize the op­tions they have to up­skill after leav­ing school,” said Wil­liams. “There’s an in­cred­i­bly di­verse range of op­por­tu­ni­ties to gain a trade or qual­i­fi­ca­tion while you’re work­ing on the job earn­ing. What could be bet­ter than a free ed­u­ca­tion?”

The Got a Trade cam­paign web­site has made videos avail­able on­line fea­tur­ing nine Got a Trade He­roes nom­i­nated by ITOs who talk about what they do, where they are in their train­ing, and how they got into their ap­pren­tice­ships.

“There are many in­dus­tries scream­ing out for skilled work­ers and both here and over­seas there is a re­nais­sance of the ap­pren­tice­ship model with the ac­knowl­edge­ment that when work­ers are trained within an in­dus­try you get the skills you need,” said Wil­liams.

He ex­plained that the per­cep­tion of trades as be­ing some­how “dumbed down” was fast dis­ap­pear­ing: “One of the ex­cit­ing things with new tech­nol­ogy is the cross­over in dis­ci­plines that is hap­pen­ing. There are high-tech in­dus­tries which need skilled em­ploy­ees for very com­plex jobs, like train­ing as a wind elec­tric­ity tech­nol­o­gist — it’s sort of like be­ing half an elec­tri­cian and half an en­gi­neer. We re­ally want to do some myth bust­ing about the jobs that are avail­able, the peo­ple who do them, and the kinds of train­ing and skills needed.”

He said the week also hoped to en­cour­age em­ploy­ers to take on ap­pren­tices: “All em­ploy­ers re­mem­ber the per­son who took them on and gave them a chance to work. It’s a way of look­ing after your in­dus­try and pay­ing it for­ward.

“Ul­ti­mately we just want to con­tex­tu­al­ize what ITOs have on of­fer and the huge range of oc­cu­pa­tional train­ing that comes un­der their um­brella. There’s some won­der­ful op­por­tu­ni­ties and we want to let stu­dents know that in the last three years of school it’s not just a mat­ter of pick­ing sub­jects out of a timetable. There are some def­i­nite path­ways that can lead to ex­cit­ing ca­reer op­por­tu­ni­ties.”

For more in­for­ma­tion, head on­line to go­ta­trade.co.nz.

Tal­ented Hast­ings bar­ber Peleti Oli re­ceived the Pasi­fika Com­mu­nity Im­pact Award

Air New Zealand cus­tomer-ser­vice agent Jah­maine Cum­mings-Hodge re­ceived the Maori Com­mu­nity Im­pact Award

Graphic and web de­signer Myra An­der­son, re­ceived the evening’s top hon­our, In­dus­try Trainee of the Year

The in­au­gu­ral School of the Year Award was pre­sented to Kawakawaba­sed Bay of Is­lands Col­lege

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