In March 18 students from ten AIEF Partner Schools joined Indigenous students from across Australia in Canberra for the fifth Work Exposure in Government Program. The program provides Indigenous students in Years 11 and 12 with hands-on experience and insights into career pathways in the public service.
During the week students watched Question Time, participated in a Parliament House education role play, toured Parliament House, attended lunch with Senator the Hon Nigel Scullion, Minister for Indigenous Affairs and each student completed a placement with a parliamentarian and their staff.
Students also visited the Australian War Memorial, where they took part in the Last Post Ceremony; the Australian Defence Force, where they were challenged to complete the over-water obstacle course; and the Australian Federal Police, where they heard from a variety of Indigenous employees who talked about their career journeys.
Other highlights from the week included a visit to the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Islander Studies, where they heard from a number of Indigenous employees; a tour of the National Museum of Australia; a trip to the Australian Institute of Sport; and watching a production of the play Black Diggers at the Canberra Theatre Centre.
The program was an excellent opportunity for students learn about different career pathways and build their leadership capabilities and self-esteem. One student commented; The WEX program has not only changed the way I view my opportunities after school, it has also taught me new things about myself.