Investigating new pathways!


McCarthy Catholic College, Emu Plains students learned about the huge range of different jobs available to them when P-TECH partners PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) visited them recently.


P-TECH is an Australian Government initiative that provides students with an industry supported pathway to a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) related diploma, advanced diploma or associate degree.

McCarthy Catholic College Principal Tania Cairns said P-TECH is all about the establishment of long-term partnerships between industry, schools and tertiary education providers.

Students from Years 7 to 10 were introduced to PwC’s CEO for Skills for Australia Sara Caplan. Sara explained what working for an organisation like PwC is like day-to-day and how there are many great career options available.

Sara explained that PwC believes it is really important to work closely with schools so they can help people with options when they leave school.

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"At PwC people can come straight from school or do further study and then join us," Mrs Caplan said.

"There is a huge range of different jobs and we think it is part of our responsibility to help people understand what those jobs are.

"We do everything from accounting to tax advice to helping businesses in their health care space or construction.

"The students at McCarthy are very interested in the whole STEM agenda.

"They like working together collaboratively and they are very interested in how to solve problems creatively.

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"What we think is very important is students developing enterprise skills which includes critical thinking, creative problem solving and working together as a team, skills they are going to need to get a job in the future."

Mrs Caplan emphasised how important it is for organisations like PwC to form partnerships with schools so students aren’t scared about their future and can be educated about the different pathways they can take.

McCarthy Year 10 students Esha Dutt and Hayden Baker said they appreciated the opportunity to brainstorm with some of the people from PwC about their project on the future of the health sector using artificial intelligence and robotics to complement the current roles medical professionals perform.

Western Sydney P-TECH Industry Liaison Officer Andrew Mashman said this opportunity was about educating students about career opportunities they would not otherwise know about.

"For PwC, this was an opportunity to meet some young people with fresh thinking who may like to go and work in their organisation," Mr Mashman said.

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"When you come to school, you come to do school stuff and it is not that often in this stage to find industry partners directly involved with schools, but that is going to become more the norm.

"I think schools have a lot of talent and resources and industry partners have a lot to bring to the party as well, which can ultimately get good outcomes for kids leaving Year 12 and transition into gap years, workforce, higher apprenticeships at PwC or university."