When the Youth Jobs PaTH program launched back in April 2017, it was heralded as a new and innovative government initiative which provides young Australians with the necessary skills, training, and vital work experience to secure employment.

For 19-year-old Ballarat local Courtney, she is a proud example of the program’s success which is a testament to her beaming smile and new found confidence she brings each day to her new job. The path to employment began for Courtney over three years ago as she was steadily approaching the final years of her high school studies.

Courtney began to realise that she had a crucial decision to make in regards to her future which required a balancing act of studying and focusing on finding a steady job.

“Towards the end of my studies, I focused almost entirely on achieving good results and studying as hard as I could, but when it came to finding work I realised that employers were often looking for people with experience,” said Courtney.

Several months after finishing her end of year exams, Courtney was then referred to PeoplePlus Ballarat with a critical goal in mind.

“When I began working with PeoplePlus, I completed various training programs and skill sets, but all I wanted to do was find meaningful work.”

Here at PeoplePlus, Courtney participated in the Work for the Dole program as well as completing a Hospitality Skill Set covering Espresso/Coffee making, which provided her with a basic understanding of the requirements and skills needed to get a foot in the door in the hospitality industry.

To then gain the initial experience of working in a hospitality environment, our team in Ballarat suggested to Courtney that she participate in the recently launched Youth Jobs PaTH and give it a go with the initial goal of gaining an internship.

When Courtney completed the Prepare element of the program, it was then that our Recruitment Consultant Jennyfer Allen successfully organised an internship trial with local employer Schnitz Ballarat.

“Courtney was very keen to work, but was lacking the vital experience to get a job in hospitality. We recommended the PaTH internship as a way for the employer to see for themselves the potential, which we already knew, she had,” said Jennyfer.

Shimon Bohbout, Multi Unit Franchisee of Schnitz, prides himself in assisting the community and transitioning youth to employment. Having already provided several candidates of PeoplePlus and much more within the community of Ballarat with employment opportunities, there was a well-established relationship to discuss internship opportunities within the business.

"I pride myself in guiding them through this process and investing the time needed to get them to the level of confidence and efficiency needed, to succeed in this industry. It gives me great joy to be able to have a positive effect on willing employees, and an even greater joy when I see their progress.

“We noticed very quickly with Courtney that she was one candidate that really wanted a job and had developed a great and positive attitude each day," says Shimon.

Participants who complete the Schnitz Ballarat Internship obtain a full understanding of all operational Stations within the restaurant environment and demonstrate their skills and competency, within each station, in a real work environment.

“The internal training programs available with Schnitz are second to none,” says Jennyfer.

“Strongly supported by sound policies, procedures, station competences and OH&S compliance, it was a natural progression to partner with Shimon to formulate our first Internship program.”

She will be the first to admit that it wasn’t easy, but Courtney believes that the trial is a great way to show a prospective employer the benefits of trial before you hire.

“By utilising the internship program, it has been hard work, but it gave me the opportunity I needed to train in a proper workplace and prove myself that I have what it takes.”

Six months into the job, things are looking positive and boisterous these days for Courtney.

“The best thing I love about my job is the interaction I have with the rest of the team.

“Before I was very quiet, but I’ve definitely opened up as a person with my new-found voice and love my work here.”

From the team at PeoplePlus, we congratulate Courtney on this fantastic achievement and wish you continued success in your career.

For more information on the Youth Jobs PaTH program, visit:

www.jobs.gov.au/youth-jobs-path