From Trainee to AFL SportsReady Field Officer

From Trainee to AFL SportsReady Field Officer

From Trainee to AFL SportsReady Field Officer

James Nelis has come full circle in his career journey. He started as a trainee at AFL Queensland (AFLQ) and is now a Field Officer for AFL SportsReady in Queensland.

“I already knew some of the staff in the Queensland team so when I saw the opportunity I applied right away,” said James.

“AFL SportsReady essentially launched my career, so I thought it was fitting that now, as a Field Officer, I will be helping to launch the careers of many other young trainees,” he added.

James started his traineeship journey in 2010 and worked with AFLQ, studying a Certificate III in Sport and Recreation.

“I was a Development Officer for the Auskick program. It was an exciting role, I got to visit local clubs, work with kids and get a little taste of teaching.”

At the end of his traineeship, James decided to look into a career in teaching and enrolled in an Education degree at a local university.

“I studied for one semester and realised on-campus learning wasn’t for me. I opted out of the degree and went back into the workforce.”

James was offered a full-time job with his former host employer at AFLQ and took on a position as Auskick Development Officer.

“It was great because I knew the role and I knew the industry so I adapted really well and absolutely loved it.”

After a year and a half James moved into a new role at AFLQ as Development Coordinator.

“In this role I had more responsibilities, I even trained AFL SportsReady trainees. I knew the traineeship program inside and out so it made sense that I now was able to mentor trainees working at AFLQ.”

James worked at AFLQ for over eight years and mentored over thirteen trainees.

“We employed four trainees on a full-time basis. It was so rewarding to see these young people grow and develop both personally and professionally. It was even more amazing to know I was also a trainee and embarked on the same journey.”

James is excited about his new role as Field Officer and looks forward to helping young people launch their careers in the same way AFL SportsReady helped him.

“I can’t wait to mentor trainees and guide them through their traineeship journey and offer them all the support and advice that I received in my experience and beyond. I am so passionate about this new role because I got my start through this program so now I am ready to pay it forward.”

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Date: 29th March 2019

Image: James Nelis

Author: Marissa Pagliarello