BSSC offers incredible careers support to students with a comprehensive careers team who liaise with a number of other agencies—such as Geared4Careers.

Geared4Careers is available throughout north-east and central Victoria and funded by GAME Traffic & Contracting—a local social enterprise committed to making a positive impact on the futures of regional Victorian youth.

During 2022 Geared4Careers provided 500 participants from Bendigo’s public colleges with support and guidance around education, employment and future careers.

Cathryn and Jess, Program Officers for Geared4Careers, are based at BSSC and enjoy their roles enormously.

Cathryn says her role allows her to work alongside students wanting to engage in various options, opportunities and experiences that contribute to their future pathways.

Jess wanted to make a bigger contribution to the community and says working for Geared4Careers was a perfect fit for her.

Program Officers connect with participants in year 9, assisting them to gain their first after-school job and build rapport through regular contact.

By Years 11 and 12, participants know the program and feel comfortable to come to Cathryn and Jess.

“We travel alongside them and help them find a position that truly suits their individual interests,” Cathryn says.

Working closely with BSSC’s Pathways Team—who specialise in careers guidance—Cathryn and Jess support participants to make choices complementing their personal qualities and abilities.

Positive relationships with other careers support agencies, and local employers, is all part of the role.

Keeping in touch with participants as they move into employment or further education is also an important aspect.

Cathryn remembers one student who began an apprenticeship only to realise, a few months later, that it wasn’t for them.

“We found them a new apprenticeship in something they now really love.”

Jess says many young people find it scary to pick up the phone and call a potential employer so she or Cathryn will often sit with students for these calls.

“It’s very rewarding when you see a positive outcome for a young person who’s had a go.”

Cathryn tells students not to assume something will fall in their lap.

“Don’t be afraid to ask questions or seek support,” she says. “Like all things in life, the best way to get guidance is to make contact.”

Students frequently drop into the office, just for a catch-up with Cathryn and Jess. It’s something they both appreciate and a sure sign of the program’s success.