City of Sydney Supports the Future of Young People

City of Sydney Supports the Future of Young People

City of Sydney Supports the Future of Young People

Like AFL SportsReady and ArtsReady, City of Sydney believes young people are our future and by providing them with career pathways and opportunities we can set them up for success.

Kate Deacon, Executive Manager of Strategy and Urban Analytics at City of Sydney is a firm believer of the traineeship program.

“We have had very positive outcomes. We have been well supported by the program from the candidate interview and selection process, through to the regular check-ins and administration of the program has all been seamless,” said Ms Deacon.

“As a values-based organisation, we believe it is important to provide young people with real work opportunities to develop the skills and confidence needed to get their careers off to a good start. The ArtsReady program supports its trainees to a high degree, which means the traineeship is more likely to be successful,” she added.

Recently, City of Sydney took on a young Samoan trainee named Seela Lotam. Her work ethic and passion saw her receive a promotion just 9 months into her traineeship to Business Support Officer in the Strategy and Urban Analytics team. Ms Deacon is supervisor to Seela and has been witness to her progress.

“Seela has been very motivated to learn, has mountains of initiative, has demonstrated a genuine interest in the City, the work she has been doing with us and how it supports her future career path,” said Ms Deacon.

“It has been terrific to see her grow in confidence and ability over a very short timeframe. She was fearless in her quest for new work experiences, but at the same time always asked for help and guidance when she needed it – this has been instrumental to us giving her more opportunities and more complex tasks and projects to work on,” she added.

Ms Deacon believes that the traineeship goes both ways, it benefits the trainee by opening them up to new career opportunities and pathways and benefits the host employer by easing some of the administration pressures of the organisation.

“Our trainee has taken on pretty much full responsibility for the administration of our unit allowing staff to focus on other projects and tasks at hand.”

“Not only has our trainee been performing very useful and important work, it is good for the diversity of our workplace to have staff who are at the beginning of their career, as well as mid-career.”

Just as much as the trainees learn from their hosts, the hosts also learn from their trainees.

“I have realised that the capacity for learning by a young person with the right attitude, when given the right opportunities, with the right support, is much greater than I expected. For our trainee to have come so far in such a short time frame is beyond our expectations.”

City of Sydney has taken on 22 ArtsReady trainees since 2013 and has been a strong advocate of the traineeship program. ArtsReady continues to look forward to working with the organisation and hearing more success stories from their trainees.

To read Seela’s story and get the trainees perspective on how a traineeship has helped launch her career, please click here.

To find out more about the diverse range of rewarding careers available through vocational education and training, and watch the real skills for real careers video, visit


Date: 17th April 2019

Image: Kate Deacon with Seela Lotam.

Author: Marissa Pagliarello