Young Indigenous people get career ready with The University of Melbourne

Young Indigenous people get career ready with The University of Melbourne

Young Indigenous people get career ready with The University of Melbourne

Thanks to the Australian Government’s Vocational Training and Employment Centres (VTEC) initiative and AFL SportsReady, seven promising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have been given the opportunity to make their mark with The University of Melbourne.

After a long interview process the candidates were placed through VTEC onto the Indigenous Australian Employment Development Program with Murrup Barak, the University’s Institute for Indigenous Development, in August 2016. The program offers a two year employment development opportunity with work placement and a nationally recognised qualification provided by AFL SportsReady.

Torres Strait Islander Siah Kiley is one of the program’s participants and is working as Student Recruitment and Enrichment Officer for the University’s Victorian College for the Arts.

‘This opportunity will not only improve my career prospects, it will give me the confidence, experience, skills and knowledge I need to further myself in life,’ said Siah.

In her role, Siah helps to reach out to Indigenous young people and communities to encourage and support their involvement in the arts.

‘I love what I do here because I believe in it. I think it is incredibly important that a role like this exists because it inspires Indigenous Australians to strive high in the Arts. We provide them with the opportunity to engage, thrive and pursue a successful career within the industry,’ she explained.

All candidates are placed in diverse roles ranging from Science Research Officer to Human Resources Assistant and Facilities Assistant. Over the two years the participants will gain valuable work experience that will set them up for their future career paths. 

 ‘Every aspect of this program is brilliant and the University and AFL SportsReady offer an incredibly strong support system. I have amazing mentors who assist and foster me every step of the way. I couldn’t be happier with the way things are and the places I’m going,’ added Siah.

Murrup Barak Indigenous Employment Officer Dan Little is a strong believer in the benefits of the program having over five years of experience in Indigenous recruitment and retention.

‘It’s imperative to give young Indigenous people the opportunity to engage in the power of education and employment.  This is what we aim to achieve through the Indigenous Australian Employment Development Program.’ Said Mr Little.  

‘The program is just one way that we respond to the current employment needs of the community today and since 2013 we have gone from strength to strength,’ he continued.

Without The University of Melbourne and VTEC this important opportunity could not be possible. AFL SportsReady looks forward to seeing the progress and success of this passionate cohort of young Indigenous people.

DATE: 15 November 2016
IMAGE: Dan Little (middle) pictured with the seven recruits. Photograph credit by Peter Casamento.
AUTHOR: Marissa Pagliarello

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*The VTEC initiative is funded by the Australian Government and is based on the GenerationOne employment model.