Gateway work experience placements 2020

November 29, 2019

The Aquinas Future Pathway team co-ordinates entry into several programmes that provide structured work placement programmes  for Year 12 and 13 students here at Aquinas. These programmes combine work experience with industry relevant unit standards that contribute towards the Level 2 and 3 NCEA qualification, that your son/daughter may be interested in.

We are always looking for and are keen to assist students who are mature, self-motivated, conscientious, willing to learn, and able to gain competency within the programmes or their potential future career pathway.

We have a number of programmes starting in Term 2 2020, with external interviews taking part in early Term 1. These programmes are retail focused, giving students an insight into the industry from helping customers, stock management, marketing, to managing a department and possible store ownership. Programmes on offer include:

Red Shirts / Blue Shirts

  • These Gateway programmes give students a chance to get work experience in retail and help make the move from school into a career – either in retail or as a financial support for other study.
  • Students will gain credits that can be used towards a nationally recognised New Zealand Certificate in Retail. They’ll learn important skills in line with industry standards including: effective communication; personal presentation; product knowledge and teamwork.

 Countdown SEEDS / Pak n Save Future Foodies

  • These Gateway Programme gives students a chance to get work experience in supermarket retail and students will gain credits that can be used towards the nationally recognised qualification, New Zealand Certificate in Retail (Level 2).
  • This could also lead to a career in retail or a pathway into a butchery or bakery apprenticeship. They’ll learn important skills in line with industry standards including: customer service; personal presentation; food safety training; product knowledge and teamwork.

 Individual, tailored Gateway options.

We can also assist students into work experience in their chosen field (provided employers are available). In these tailored placements, we support students to achieve 20 unit standards that are aligned with industry skills requirements. Ideally, students hoping to access tailored packages with professionals like builders and plumbers, its important that students have a restricted licence or has access to transport for their placement.

As with other the Gateway packages, students need to commit to completing 8-10 placements at a workplace. We expect that students are self-motivated, conscientious, willing to learn, and engage with people in the workplace. As work is completed off-site, it is important that students turn up on time to all courses and placements, meeting Aquinas and store behavior guidelines. We can find a fit for most students, so if you have an idea of something that’s not listed here – let us know and we’ll see what we can do!

Students are supported by individual Programme Coordinators, instore staff, employment liaisions and the Aquinas Careers team. There are costs involved in completing programmes and being equipped to take part in work experience placements but these  costs are covered by the Gateway Funding provided by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC), where possible and relevant.

 OSH requirements

All students on Gateway work experience need to complete OSH training. This will be offered in Terms 1 and 2 next year.

How do placements work?

Individual placements can be completed over weekends, in holidays or in school time by arrangement with the employer and school. Countdown SEEDS, Pak n Save Future Foodies, Red Shirts/Blue Shirts and most trade-related placements all take place on weekdays). As they are in school time, there needs to be commitment from students and teachers to cover and complete missed work, and assessment tasks supersede work placements.

Students will always need whānau/family support to successfully navigate workplace experiences, so the first place to start is the conversation at home over the summer holiday. If these options sound like something you as a student are interested, or as a parent you think it is valuable to pursue then please get in touch with the Future Pathways team early in 2020 or even send us an email on the contact details below to register your interest.

Mikaere Smith – 
Natasha Kahle –