School-based traineeships are a great way for students to combine paid work, training and their time at school—at the same time as gaining an industry-recognised national qualification and credit towards the HSC. Sound too good to be true? It’s exactly what Jessica Turney (ICS ’18) has just accomplished. Here’s how she went about it.
A school-based traineeship in floristry
For the past 18 months, Jessica has undertaken a school-based traineeship in floristry. This has involved working as a trainee at Flower Bud, where she has been taught all the practical skills required for floristry, while concurrently attending TAFE one day a week to study for her Certificate II in Floristry.
It has been a fairly demanding schedule—working and studying (both at school and TAFE) has gone hand-in-hand with weekly 3am trips to the Sydney Flower Markets every Wednesday! However, all the hard work has paid off and Jessica and her family are putting her newfound skills into practice at their new florist in Balgownie, Brilliant Blooms.
Since the shop opened in May this year, Jessica has been busy not just studying for her HSC, but also meeting the needs of her growing customer base. A regular work day might see her creating floral arrangements for birthday cakes, weddings and other events, as well as numerous bunches for sale every day. As the business has grown, its offerings have expanded to include homewares, gifts, Christmas decorations and much more.
Reflecting on the past 18 months, Jessica says:
It has all been exciting, interesting, challenging and amazing. I wouldn’t change anything and I would definitely do it all again. With the continual support and encouragement from my family, friends, school and staff at the flower shop where I completed my traineeship, it made learning and progressing through all my studies easier. Being able to complete both school and a traineeship has brought so many opportunities and it has been amazing to use all the knowledge and skills I have accumulated over the past 18 months and develop something I love.
Managing the load of study and work
Juggling school, TAFE and work was hectic at times! But Jessica says that the key to getting everything done was proper time management. Keeping a strict eye on her timetable meant that she was able to not only complete her school and TAFE commitments on time, but also still have a social life with family and friends.
In addition to all this and as part of her HSC program, Jessica enrolled in the Industry-Based Learning Board Endorsed Course, contributing additional units towards the award of her HSC. Part of the requirement for this course was the completion of a journal ensuring that key learning criteria are taking place in the workforce.
Illawarra Christian School congratulates Jessica on her substantial achievement. We are pleased to be able to offer pathways in education which enable students to continue to develop their interests. We look forward to hearing about how Jessica will grow and develop her business!
Is a school-based apprenticeship right for you?
School-based apprenticeships and traineeships are offered in many areas of industry including (among others) automotive, construction, hairdressing, hospitality and plumbing. If you would like to gain your Higher School Certificate while simultaneously commencing training towards your career, this may be a viable option for you. You will need to find an employer to take you on as an apprentice or trainee and then speak to your Careers Advisor. If you are interested in finding out more, visit School-Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships in NSW.