Lighthouse students gain gov’t work experience

| 18/05/2017
CNS Local Life

Andrea Fa’amoe (left) and Lauren Knight (right) present Jadhaan Whittaker with his work experience certificate of completion

(CNS Local Life): The six students of the Lighthouse School’s (LHS) graduating class took part in a day’s work experience at the Government Administration Building on Friday, 12 May 2017. The initiative, organised by Lauren Knight, manager of the Internal Audit Service, was designed to help the students gain a better understanding of workplace duties, protocols and expectations prior to leaving school in June.

Knight said that it is hoped that the government can partner with the school to make the event an annual fixture.

Before the day, students had expressed interest in learning more about working in the following Internal Audit and PoCS areas: accounting, internal control, compliance – Jaryed Myles; human resources – Lee Ebanks; management support – Xena Barnes and Zaykeese Christian; policy development – Justin Wright; and leadership and learning – Jadhaan Whittaker.

The students and three LHS staff members were welcomed on arrival and given an overview of career opportunities within the civil service by Acting Deputy Governor, and PoCS Chief Officer, Gloria McField-Nixon.

Students then spent two hours shadowing staff volunteers from both the Internal Audit Service and PoCS. These one-on-one orientations included a question-and-answer session as well as data entry, shredding and photocopying.

After lunch, the students attended a PowerPoint presentation on leadership, self-confidence and teamwork given by Graeme Jackson of PoCs’s Management Support Unit.

CNS Local Life

Justin Wright listens while Jo Richards and Julette Wright-Eloise explain their work roles

Speaking on the civil service’s commitment to corporate social responsibility, Knight said, “I felt it was important for the students of the graduating class to gain insight into corporate life, as well as learn about office etiquette.

“Additionally, I wanted them to learn about many of the different career options in government so that they can make informed decisions about their future and, hopefully, consider the government as a potential employer.”

McField-Nixon, speaking informally to the group after her speech, found one student who was already challenging assumptions about what special needs students are capable of.

“I was delighted to learn that one of the soon-to-be graduates, Jadhaan Whittaker, is the first Lighthouse School student to be accepted into college,” she said.

“He will be attending school in the UK and wants to become a veterinary technician. Jadhaan has effectively shattered the glass ceiling and proved that many things are possible through hard work and commitment. Additionally, his success highlights the amazing work being done by Lighthouse School staff.”

Despite being out of office that day, Deputy Governor Franz Manderson nevertheless took time to drop by and greet the students. He later said, “I can confirm that the government employees who took part were impressed by the core skills the students already had and by their eagerness to understand the facets of each job.”

Lighthouse School Principal Elroy Bryan, who accompanied the students, said, “This was the first time our school has been afforded an opportunity such as this for its entire graduating class. The feedback I got from our students was that they enjoyed the day and welcomed the initiative as a way of preparing them for the world of work. It gave them practical, real-world insights into what office environments are like, as well as the huge of range of jobs within government.”

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Category: Civil Service, Lighthouse School

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