23 Nov 2021
Stereotypes are expected to be broken down and career ambitions raised at a special expo for almost 450 Year 5 school students from Hervey Bay and Maryborough at USC’s Fraser Coast campus tomorrow (24 November).
The Explore Career Pathways Expo will give the 10 and 11-year-olds a taste of what their futures could hold with hands-on career experiences across a range of fields, including nursing, criminology, marine science, teaching, paramedicine, policing, robotics and forestry.
USC acting Manager of Student Access and Diversity Sarah Glencross said that while focusing on careers in primary school might seem early, it was an optimal time for them to explore their future job options.
Decades of studies have found children can form their ideas about careers and gender stereotypes at a young age which can influence the subjects that they choose in high school and the jobs they end up chasing,” Ms Glencross said.
“We want to help change those stereotypes and raise ambitions among primary school children in the Fraser Coast region by exposing them to some of the vast career and educational choices open to them.
“The expo encourages them not to limit their choices based on gender and to expand their thinking when it comes to what they can do when they finish school.”
Exhibitors include Fraser Coast Regional Council, Zest Robotics, the Queensland Police Service, HQPlantations and the RSPCA.
The Year 5 students with also join in practical, hands-on demonstrations of jobs as animal ecologists, scientists, nurses, lawyers, criminologists, paramedics and teachers with the help of USC academics and students.
The expo is part of a wider program run by USC for Year 4, 5 and 6 students that includes practical classroom activities to help children develop an awareness of their own talents and interests while discovering some of the skills needed for a range of jobs.
The EXPLORE program is funded through the Federal Government’s Higher Education Participation and Partnership Program and forms part of a suite of USC programs for primary and secondary school students to build aspirations to go on to higher education.