Melbourne Work Experience

work experience

Year 11 students are currently undertaking a two week program of work experience. The majority of students are working in Melbourne. For many this means exposure to a ‘whole new world’! The city is so different to the country. Students have to be able to self navigate themselves to work catching a variety of transportation – trams, trains, buses and walking. They are exposed to many different cultures and types of food. Budgets are limited so keeping their finances in order is a priority and finding healthy but cheaper eats essential!

There are night activities to undertake – exploring the nature of the Melbourne CBD, ice skating, lighting festivals, public gallery walks in the laneways, the movies, risk taking by going out on “The Edge” at the top of Eureka Sky Deck and so much more.

A variety of work experiences have been organised for these students giving them a taste of what big cities offer, as exposure to a variety of businesses and occupations, is limited in small country towns or rural areas.

Year 11 Work Experience


Nine Year 11 students spent two weeks in Melbourne, at two different YHA hostels and working at two different placements over the past fortnight. Job placements included Knox Private Hospital, Australian Education Union, Hearld and Weekly Times, Revolution IT and the Melbourne Children’s Court. There were many night time activities to explore Melbourne: Lebanese meal in Sydney Road Brunswick, Ice skating, swimming at the Aquatic Centre and a five course meal at the Sofitel Hotel, where students met the chef in the 5-star kitchen.

Year 11 work experience is an exciting opportunity that allows students to become confident using public transport, gives them a new perspective on urban life and prepares them for tertiary education and employment. Many past students have recalled it as the highlight of their school years and teachers and parents have noticed the mature and resilient attitude that students return with, after two weeks in the ‘big smoke’. Thanks to Mr Poynton for organising this experience over many years, as well as Mrs Ballard and Mr Quinlan who have continued to provide this excellent opportunity for Hawkesdale students.

Year 11 Work Experience in Melbourne

Our Year 11 students are enjoying their second week of work experience this week, after overcoming the challenges of getting to their work places, mostly on time, by public transport. We have students working at various locations including the Public Records Office (Sharra), Peter Stevens Motorcycles (Brayden), Melbourne Girl’s College (Chloe), Howard Florey Institute (Ben) and Lamborghini Melbourne (Jamie). We have students working in various jobs, including hairdressing (Carly), childcare (Kelly Hogan and Kelly Lucas), fashion (Amy and Hannah), financial planning (Nikki) and architecture (Brianna).
Some of the evening activities have included the Skydeck at Eureka Tower, a tour of St Hilda’s College at Melbourne University, a trip to the Australia-Japan soccer match at the MCG, movies at Crown and Lygon street, a meal in China Town and swimming at the Melbourne Aquatic Centre. Twenty students participated in the first week and fourteen continue with their second week in Melbourne, while the remainder have local job placements. We thank Judy Ballard, who has replaced Graeme Poynton, for her excellent organisation of this wonderful opportunity for our students.

Students at Work





Year 11 are in Melbourne for two weeks work experience – one of our school’s most successful programs.  It gives students an insight into city life, exposure to different cultures and access to work experiences  that are not readily available in our local country area. 

The first day coincides with the open day for RMIT university, so students spend time looking at the many displays and demonstrations for possible tertiary study opportunities. 

Once back at the YHA, students are given time to unpack and commence the domestics eg the do’s, don’ts, shoulds and coulds associated with communal living in a youth hostel. The bombardment of questions regarding “how do I get to work?” commence, even after hours of research, googling, metlinking and melwaying back at school. But when reality strikes, the virtual world of satellite images, online maps etc means nothing

After an evening meal, students and staff travelled into the CBD to physically experience and follow public  transport modes of travel and steps for morning number one – trying to read those obscure railway timetables, gain a sense of direction and develop a level of confidence or a greater level of anxiety!

 After day 1 …… New Found Experiences

Students were asked to describe their first day of work in a sentence. Here are their responses.

  • From the Howard Florey Medical Research Institute…”I observed a surgery during the morning, and then got to genotype in the afternoon. It was really good and would rate it a 7 out of 10 and am looking forward the rest of the week. “
  • From the Carlton police station….”I went to the court house today for the morning and then I went and ate food and then I went and then i help the cops do some paper work stuff.”
  • From Melbourne Girls College….”Today was very interesting, everyone was very friendly and the students were all nice to me. I had a great day teaching and learning about the teaching industry. “
  • “I worked at Billy Hyde’s music and tuned guitars and made some labels for the instruments and we had to restock.”
  • Essendon airport…..”I worked at general aviation maintenance. I helped build a motor for a piper Cherokee .   8/10”
  • Maintenance at St Hildas……” made a kit shine and stack chairs“
  • From a sports retail shop….”Went to Triggers and did some vacuuming, also I waxed some snow boards which was new and exciting”
  • Financial pIanning….. “worked at JM Financial planning, I was on the 7th floor, had a very nice view of the river. I sat at the computer all day, filing and scanning, and listening to the radio, it was great!”
  • Horticultural Research….”I got off the tram at the right stop and had no idea where the uni I was working at was. It was just across the road! I met all the people and did things in the nursery all day like planting rose cuttings. It was pretty good overall.”