Raising Career Aspirations

Our Transition to Tertiary activities support the Education Benalla Program’s aim to improve family, community and students expectations of further education and their aspirations beyond school.  

Information, encouragement and practical support can improve how students transition to, and complete, apprenticeships and tertiary studies. Equally, students can be encouraged by family and community discussions about the benefits, possibilities and practicalities of further education.

Career Action Plans

Every Year 10 student in Benalla completes a Career Action Plan (CAPS) with the help of a skilled motivational coach who is funded by Tomorrow Today to work in both secondary schools. The coach encourages students to start planning for the future, then set and pursue a career that is aligned to their interests and talents. Workshops also provide students with the tools to select relevant workshops at Benalla Careers Day (see right). Our staff analyses the resulting CAPS plans to identify unmet information and training needs.

Careers Day

Benalla Careers Day offers every Benalla Year 10 student a chance to participate in a local event to develop skills to manage their life and career, investigate volunteering opportunities and make informed choices about their future. Many different local agencies, organisations and businesses support this event. Students visit local businesses (in areas relevant to their interests) to see them in operation; participate in ‘speed dating’ with different employers and browse a jobs and skills expo.

University Bus Trips

Year 11 and 12 students in Benalla are given the opportunity to visit university campuses in Melbourne to look at courses on offer, accommodation and facilities.

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Students can visit four different universities over a two-year period and meet Benalla students, already at university, who might act as future mentors for them. Prior to these trips, most Benalla students had not visited a university. Now many are now discussing the real possibility of attending one.

Tomorrow Today pays for the buses and partners with both secondary schools and Benalla Rural City Council to organise and run the trips.

Parent Education

Each year we collaborate with school and career advisory services to provide parents with talks on topics that demystify universities.

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Topics include:

  • Demystifying University
  • Parents as Career Advisors – helping your children to make informed decisions, and
  • Can my Wallet Afford It? – focusing on the affordability of university, with information on accommodation and budgeting.

Tomorrow Today and Benalla P-12 College made a successful submission to Victorian Government for a two-year grant for a program that provides Year 9 students with an intensive, personalised approach to career pathways. The program focuses on engaging families and raising their aspirations for their children.

Tomorrow Today subsidises the students’ parents to attend a ‘Work Pathways for Parents’ course that involves employment and job skills preparation.

Students from Benalla P-12 Barkly Street Campus and  FCJ College on a visit to Latrobe University Bundoora.

Benalla Flexible Learning Centre

In January 2015 we were delighted by the establishment of the Benalla Flexible Learning Centre with Department of Education & Training funding.

Tomorrow Today staff helped get the Centre off the ground and a TTF Community Grant in 2015 funded new exercise programs and part of a kitchen area where students can prepare healthy meals.

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The Centre aims to engage with 15 to 19 year old students not currently attending school in the hope they will return to school or move on to TAFE or another educational setting.

The Learning Centre in Benalla is a campus of Wodonga Secondary College. Students must commit to attending in person for three hours each week and supplement that with on-line learning. Thirty students were enrolled by the census date of February 28, 2015.

During 2014, Tomorrow Today led a working group to identify, locate, support and re-engage disengaging and disengaged Benalla young people with school or alternative educational settings.

Year 12 Scholarships

Each year $1,000 scholarships are awarded to a number of Year 12 students at both secondary schools. The scholarships assist with the costs associated with transitioning to tertiary.

Year 12 Study Camp

Teachers at Benalla P-12 College believe that the Year 12 Study Camp, at the beginning of the year, motivates students and encourages them to complete their studies.

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Cost was a barrier to all students attending the camp so Tomorrow Today now works with the school to subsidise the camp while schools make every effort to ensure all students attend. The impact of camp attendance will be evaluated. Later in the year, Tomorrow Today funds a motivational speaker to inspire and focus students.

Community Grants

The Education Benalla Program is community-wide so as well as working on its own programs Tomorrow Today works in partnership with others and also funds organisations that want to achieve similar goals through their work.

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In 2015, a Community Grant is helping the Beacon Foundation’s ‘Polish’ Program run at Benalla P-12 College. The interactive program – with mock interviews, work ethic, etiquette, employer expectations and other work related topics – is the culmination of the Year 9’s careers work.

In recent years Community Grants, funded by interest earned on the Tomorrow Today Community Fund, have supported Benalla Careers Day and the Year 12 Camp at Benalla P-12 College.

Graduates of the 2015 ‘Work Pathways for Parents’ program.