Forget the silver bullet

Jackson says Careers NZ aims to help those students in most need. Any new programmes would be targeted to those students who do not already enjoy access to opportunities to engage with, and learn from, business people through existing family connections or networks.

Careers NZ is investigating wide range of initiatives. It has already started training mentors in how to have career discussions and is investigating options for establishing mentoring programmes. 

In the far north of the country pilot project involving the EPMU and Business NZ is in its first stages.

Careers NZ plans to talk with business organisations such as NZIM, Chambers of Commerce and Rotary whose members may be willing to give back to their communities. 

Careers NZ is also assessing whether technology platform may be the best way to help link young people in their search for jobs and careers.

It is also exploring options to help young people gain exposure to business through internships. 

Primarily targeting senior school students rather than graduates, the scheme aims to help students experience the realities and challenges of being an employee. It would run over longer period of time than the traditional short-term work experience programmes currently provided by many schools and businesses.

Lamburn says such internships would be ideally suited to young people transitioning between school and tertiary education.

Careers NZ could provide template agreements and guidelines for employers from an ACC, health and safety, and other practical perspectives.

Tai-Marie Yorston, senior career education advisor for Careers NZ, tells Executive Update there are now many opportunities for employers to engage with the young workforce and encourages them to “be brave about it”.

 “Ethics is really strong platform for business to connect with educators and young people,” she says, “and provides promotional value for employers and industry.”

She suggests employers consider cadetships and scholarships as way to pick and choose the best employees of the future.

Jay Lamburn encourages any business people wanting to explore ways to work more closely with the education sector to email her on: [email protected].

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