More than 140 local Year 5 students took part in the recent CQUniversity (CQU) and University of the Sunshine Coast (UniSC) Careers Day, exploring possible career options and getting a taste of university life.
Students from Childers State School, Thabeban State School, Bundaberg West State School and Bundaberg South State School took part in the 30-minute rotations covering occupations such as nursing, allied health, teaching, town planning, digital media, criminology and policing.
The day also provided the students with the opportunity explore the local university campus.
CQU’s Manager of Future Students Kylie Ciocca said the program was designed to raise education and career aspirations among primary-school aged children.
“The program was specifically tailored to a Year 5 audience,” she said.
“While this may seem like an early age to be thinking about university and jobs, kids are at a stage where they are forming interests and getting curious about what they may end up doing as an adult and the pathways they may need to take.”
Kylie said the hands-on sessions allowed students to immerse themselves in certain professions.
“For example, in our nursing session the children learned about [the] basics of caring for a patient and the fundamentals of good hand hygiene,” she said.
“This involved them placing their hands under a UV light both before and after washing their hands, so that they could see bacteria and how good hand washing is important.
“The children also got hands on in their teaching session by pairing up and taking turns to create Lego sculptures through the verbal direction of their partner.
“They also enjoyed the policing session where our Queensland Police Liaison Officers shared a yarning circle to talk about the important work police officers do in our community.
“One of the highlights was definitely our criminology session where students had to work as a group to analyse a ‘Goldilocks crime scene’ and use evidence to solve a crime.”
The Careers Day was a joint activity delivered through CQU’s Connect and UniSC’s Explore programs which are part of the Commonwealth-funded Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP).
The HEPPP-funded CQU Connect program has been running for more than a decade with the aim of increasing post-school education participation across the Wide Bay Burnett, Central Queensland and North Queensland.
Over the past decade, thousands of students in these regions have participated in the CQU Connect program with hundreds being encouraged to pursue vocational or higher education during or after high school.