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Learning to Fly

Talent for Business Growth

A program to help Gold Coast businesses access student talent

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Gold Coast Airport, a subsidiary of Queensland Airports Limited, proactively contributes to the prosperity of the local community. In recent years the company has developed a series of programs to enable students to gain experience and employment opportunities.

High School Student Programs

For high school students the airport runs three key activities to support students who may be considering a career in the aviation industry by:

  1. Running career workshops with career guidance counsellors to highlight the diverse range of careers within the industry, in conjunction with airport staff who discuss their own roles within the organisation and the pathways they followed to secure their employment.
  2. Work experience programs for secondary students across a range of disciplines within the administrative; trade and maintenance; and aviation operational aspects of the business.
  3. A partnership with the government funded Aerospace Gateway Schools Program. Miami State High School were the first local school to join the program, with The Southport School currently looking at becoming involved now too. 

Tertiary Initiatives

In addition to the school-based programs, the organisation also has a number of initiatives available for students within the tertiary sector, through partnerships established with local TAFE’s and universities. These include:

  1. Project-based Internship Program. Offering students either a full or part time unpaid internship. Now in its second year of operation, the program already has a 100% success rate of employment for participants.
  2. Work Immersion Program. Offered as either a full or part time program to students who are usually at least 2/3 of their way into their study qualification. Last year two students took part with both students gaining full time employment following completion of the program.
  3. Graduate Program. Offering new graduates a twelve-month full-time paid position within their emerging area of expertise. Last year two new graduates completed the program, both of whom secured ongoing fulltime employment with external companies at the completion of their twelve-month terms.

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Employer Benefits

As the programs continue to be developed and refined Gold Coast Airport readily admits there have been numerous benefits to the organisation through student engagement. Students help them to stay in touch with current trends, methods and approaches. They also bring fresh ideas, new perspectives and energy to the organisation; and in many cases, those students who have engaged in their workplace programs have gone on to become employed by the company.

As Beau Tydd, General Manager for Technology & Innovation says: “At QAL, we believe that our strong engagement with the university sector is a key to our community and social responsibility core value.  We are proud to be a major contributor and sponsor to industry led events, developing an innovative workforce placement program and undertaking industry leading proof of concepts projects”.