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Tertiary Education Commission kickstarts career of young international student

By Chris Dabb
August 5 2019

Posted in Employer Stories

The Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) has given one international student the experience and skills she needs to make vital headway in her business career.

During the summer of 2018/2019, TEC took on its first ever Summer of Biz intern – Victoria University marketing and psychology graduate, Ashley Cao.

Ashley was placed in a marketing and administration support role at TEC for three months where she was able to help the organisation get important work done and gain valuable real world experience to put on her CV.

Internships a win-win

Senior HR Manager Murray Watt says TEC is fully aware of the importance of giving tertiary students the opportunity to get vital work experience on their CV.

“Our executive leadership team knows that it’s tough out there for new grads and believes internships are genuinely worthwhile.

“Originally, we thought we were being virtuous by offering a few months’ work to a new graduate, but it was a growth thing for us too. We learnt lots about supporting grads in the workplace and how important diversity is to an organisation’s culture,” he says.

Fresh ideas and new perspectives

Murray says one of the key benefits of hiring an intern is that they bring big, bold, fresh ideas and new perspectives to an organisation.

“Ashley was fun to have around. She really delivered on her work, asked questions and fitted in well with the culture of our organisation,” he says.

Ashley was given the opportunity to work as part of a team, improve her communication skills and put a series of concrete achievements on her CV. All thanks to her supportive team and managers at TEC. Infact, Ashley’s colleagues were so pleased with her performance that she has since been offered longer term employment as a programme administrator.

“We saw an exponential growth in Ashley’s skills and confidence in just a few short months – it was just so rewarding and gave us such a buzz,” Murray says.

The key to internship success

Murray puts the success of the internship programme down to the training and support provided by Summer of Biz, the level of commitment put in by Ashley’s managers/buddies at TEC, and Ashley’s own willingness to learn.

“Summer of Biz helped to make the recruitment process easy. There was great training available, timely communication around what needed to be done and when, and the selection of grads to choose from was generally outstanding.

“Ashley brought the right attitude and was teamed up with people who had the time, patience and skills to support her learning,” he says.

The future looks bright

Murray says TEC looks forward to hiring more interns for the summer of 2019/2020 programme, including at least one from Summer of Tech.

“If you’re an organisation sitting on the fence or considering hiring an intern, just go for it. If you place them in the right team with the right managers/buddies, the programme will be a success for you too,” he says.

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