Published on June 9, 2020
The Business and Industry Dinner is an important activity on any Year 12 student’s calendar.
Usually, the Dinner involves is a shared meal between students and professionals and the opportunity to network and take a deep dive into the realities of specific professions. A highlight of Futures Focus Week, students enjoy the opportunity to engage with industry professionals who have ‘trod the path’ that they hope to pursue post-HVGS. It’s enormously valuable to students.
So, when COVID-19 restrictions meant a cancellation of the Dinner, a digital version was reimagined – where students could connect and engage with these same individuals over ZOOM calls.
“The ‘digital version’ has been an overwhelming success,” says Mr Scott Warnock, HVGS Futures and Careers Counsellor. “Some students have participated in upwards of five sessions, from a range of industries, to support their career pathway decisions.”
While each ZOOM session has been different, students have benefitted from the authenticity of our industry professionals. From sharing personal anecdotes of their academic journey to some of the everyday pitfalls and limitations of professional life, each of our professionals has presented compelling insights into their careers.
Year 12 student, Mia Gould, was an active participant in the sessions. She hopes to pursue a law degree at the University of Newcastle and has ambitions to specialise in an area of the law that she is passionate about, like working with NGO organisations to improve social justice.
“The Zoom calls opened my eyes to a range of study choices that are available to me once leaving school,” said Mia. “I could cement the ideas that I had thought about, and ask specific questions. It highlighted a range of organisations and businesses that need certain expertise in their operations.”
“My key takeaway from the sessions was the realisation that there are so many pathways to enter the course or degree I aspire to do – even if I don’t reach my ATAR”.
Connecting students with professionals, particularly Alumni, allows them to recognise that they too can follow that particular career pathway. By learning from professionals, students access a real-world connection and develop greater understanding as to the relevance of their study, interests or beliefs. These experiences also allow for some of the stereotypes and myths to be debunked!
“It was interesting to note the shocked looks from some of our students when hearing about some of the duties of a Ward Nurse from past student, Michaela Thompson,” says Scott. “Her real-world account helped students understand the range of duties a Registered Nurse may have to complete during a shift. However, Michaela’s friendly nature reassured them that they would adapt and learn to appreciate some of these less-than-pleasant components of the role!”
HVGS takes a diligent approach to ensure students engage in Futures and Careers education.
Endeavours like the Business and Industry Dinner, alongside increasing our connection with HVGS alumni through work experience opportunities, ensures we are striving to provide a future-focused learning experience for students, which is the catalyst for a love of life-long learning and a happy and successful life.