La Salle College students sample industry-backed Career Taster Program

07 June 2022

La Salle College students have been given a valuable insight into the plethora of prospective work opportunities, participating in the launch of the new Career Taster Portal.

Attending the launch at North Metropolitan TAFE’s East Perth campus, students from the Middle Swan school were privy to STEM teachings in action.

They participated in practical activities involving emerging technologies in the resources sector using radio equipment to control haul trucks and diggers in a simulated miniature pit. As well, they performed hands-on mechanical fitting tasks used in a number of mining, mechanical engineering and maintenance trades.

An offshoot to the Career Taster Program, the portal is a one-stop resource to connect students and schools with the program’s industry taster experiences through a searchable database. It also provides schools with access to resources to plan and deliver their program and includes a function for employers to nominate to provide an experience.

There are more than 100 experiences and comprehensive teaching resources already available.

In announcing the initiative with Premier Mark McGowan, Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery said it was important to provide students with exposure to post-secondary training options as early as possible.

“Students who attended the Career Taster event experienced first-hand how technology is paving the way for a more productive workforce and the importance of teamwork and effective communication.”

Alfonso Di Pino, La Salle College VET Coordinator

“Providing Year 9 students with real world experiences and showing them the many exciting opportunities and careers available, helps them to make connections between training and education pathways and occupations,” she said.

“Exposing high school students to post-school opportunities that they find meaningful early can also help to keep them engaged and ensure they stay at school and go into training or higher education.”

La Salle College VET Coordinator Alfonso Di Pino said students had come away from the event with a spring in their step and deeper understanding of which educational pathways would help them achieve future careers.

“La Salle College has a strong ONSITE INC and Vocational Education and Training (VET) program and the new Career Taster portal is another valuable platform for our students to build up their knowledge of industries and career education pathways,” Mr Di Pino said.

La Salle is a member of a seven school cluster that employs ONSITE INC to facilitate the coordination, placement and supervision of students undertaking workplace learning, with a view to building industry and training partnerships.

“Students who attended the Career Taster event experienced first-hand how technology is paving the way for a more productive workforce and the importance of teamwork and effective communication.”

La Salle College Year 9 student Cooper Ruthven-Hawley said the day had been an eye-opener for future prospects.

“I really enjoyed the Career Taster Day and had the opportunity to operate an excavator using remote control technology.

“It was a great experience and has sparked my interest in the mining industry.”

As part of the Career Taster Program, Year 9 students are able to attend TAFE as well as industry for a day of hands-on Career Taster experiences.

Students can take part in a range of activities including product and design in which they make a prototype pair of sunglasses; gaming and animation to create their own 3D game character and tourism channels where they are involved in a simulated travel agency.

The program was co-designed with industry, education experts, TAFEs and school sectors to offer opportunities for Year 9 students to extend their thinking through practical industry experiences and learn more about jobs of interest.

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