• Skilling South Australia

Mum's the word for Erin's dream of a career in cooking

School-based apprentice Erin Best has the full support of her mum, Jane. Picture: Mike Burton/The Advertiser

Courtesy of The Advertiser.

Jane Best has some valuable advice for her children: find out who you want to be and follow your dreams. So when her daughter Erin chose to embrace a vocational education training opportunity in order to pursue her dream of a career working with food, Jane was fully supportive of her daughter’s decision.

As a Year 11 student at Mount Carmel College in Rosewater, Erin opted to study her Certificate II in Kitchen Operations, which included doing 140 voluntary hours in a kitchen. Then in Year 12 came the offer of a school-based apprenticeship at the Caledonian Hotel in North Adelaide, giving Erin the chance to gain her Certificate III in Kitchen Operations while still completing her South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE).

“I was so happy for her,” Jane says. “This has given her an amazing opportunity to transition from school to a working life. She’s seeing the world through more mature eyes, working with various demographics and ages, being led by various people in the kitchen and contributing to their success.”

Jane is also appreciative of the positive mental impact her daughter’s experience is bringing. “Her self-esteem is absolutely through the roof,” she says. “She’s so proud of what she’s achieving and she doesn’t have that fear of the unknown after school. And she’s getting major life skills.”

These skills mean that, at the end of Erin’s apprenticeship, a number of career pathways will be open to her in an industry that has grown 7 per cent year-on-year for the past four years in Australia alone. “By the time she’s in her early 20s she’s going to be a qualified chef and she can go off into the world, travel, go to university – do whatever she wants to, because she has a fantastic foundation for the rest of her life” Jane says. “I could not be more proud.”

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