Ipswich State High School students Chloe McCoombes and Josh Braaksma, with Springfield Land Corporation’s Terry Kearney, celebrate being job-ready.
Ipswich State High School students Chloe McCoombes and Josh Braaksma, with Springfield Land Corporation’s Terry Kearney, celebrate being job-ready. Claudia Baxter

Forum links teens and work

AN INDUSTRY and schools forum in Ipswich on Friday will bring students and employers together to focus on getting teens ready for the workforce.

Ipswich State High School principal Simon Riley said the forum, the first of its kind in the city, would help make students "employable" and establish further links between schools and industry.

"We can never do enough of this sort of thing. The more you do, the more people come, the more they hear the message," he said.

"Students now need to have workplace skills.

"We have 30 vocational courses delivered in this school.

"We've got kids walking out of here ready to walk into skills in which there are shortages."

Chloe McCoombes, in Year 12 at Ipswich High, has been offered an apprenticeship at Stefans later this year.

She's been hairdressing at the school for three years.

"I did it in Year 10 to give it a go, and I loved it," she said.

"I've already done my certificate two in hairdressing through the school."

Josh Braaksma, in Year 11, has secured a carpentry apprenticeship with builders based at Willowbank.

"I just liked working with wood," he said.

"At school you get a choice of metalwork and woodwork.

"At the moment I'm doing a school-based apprenticeship.

"It's a day a week at TAFE, a day at work and a couple of days at school.

"It helps you get to know what you want to do and gives you a head start."

The Ipswich and West Moreton School and Industry Forum will be held at the Civic Centre on Friday morning.

Springfield Land Corporation (SLC) executive general manager for education and health, Terry Kearney, will be guest speaker at the forum.

"We're master developers, SLC - we bring together the partners that would build community," he said.

"To me, the forum is about focusing on securing the pathway beyond the school gate. Often students can create a direct relationship with the employer."

Forum organiser Worklinks will bring together schools, government departments, Construction Skills Queensland, Origin Alliance and others.



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