WIC has been glad to partner with the NRL’s School to Work Program throughout the semester, providing a space for students to continue their mentorship after graduating high school and commencing study at UOW.
While the NRL School to Work (S2W) program starts with high school students in years 11 & 12, the mentorship provided is intended to be ongoing into whatever comes next. For those students who decide to attend UOW, WIC is happy to provide a space for them and their mentors to continue that relationship.
NRL School to Work Program Delivery Coordinator Dokota Simonds and S2W mentors Jaleesa and Alanah have been coming into the centre every month to meet with their mentees and monitor their progress as they follow a Career Development Plan focused not just on their career aspirations, but their personal goals as well.
Woolyungah Indigenous Centre has provided a culturally appropriate, welcoming safe haven for all Indigenous participants. WIC is a space for all students to come and relax, study, or connect away from the challenges tertiary education can ask of a young person. All NRL School to Work participants has been utilising the space regularly, getting valuable tutoring and support as well as a quiet break-out space to focus on their studies and an easily accessible information centre with friendly staff for any help they may need.
Shaun Humphries (NRL School to Work Regional Manager) stated that “finding time in student’s busy schedules was always a challenge, if they weren’t in class they were studying and didn’t have time to travel into Wollongong just to be able to meet with their NRL School to Work Project Officer. With WIC being located on campus and their open-door policy, we can now meet with the students in between classes or on a coffee break and they’re still close enough to make it to their next class. This has allowed us to meet with more students more often and provide next-level support. Shaun added “with NRL School to Work staff working collaboratively with WIC staff, the program is continuing to provide students with a culturally safe transition for them to be introduced to WIC and the many services they can provide”
Before utilising WIC, NRL School to Work Project Officers and participants didn’t have many options for meetings once they’ve left school and commencing their busy tertiary education placements. WIC has opened up so many opportunities not only for Indigenous students but also the NRL School to Work program, just by being there.