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Trainees graduate from program by Callum Johnson 4 April 2014

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acob McKellar and Joshua Horner have finished off an excellent year building their skills and knowledge in the University of Southern Queensland’s (USQ) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Traineeship Program. The program, which started in 2012, is committed to closing the gap in employment outcomes between Indigenous and nonIndigenous Australians by employing trainees at USQ on a full-time basis over 12-months. Upon the successful completion of the program, the trainees receive a nationally-recognised qualification at a Certificate III level. Mr Horner said he thoroughly

enjoyed his time as a USQ trainee and hopes to continue to enhance his skills in marketing. “The program was a fantastic opportunity to learn important industry skills including time management, report writing and the functionality of programs within the Microsoft Office Suite,” he said. “I was very fortunate to be a member of the Online Marketing Team and gain a lot of on-the-job experience as well as assisting posts on USQ social media channels and generate engagement metrics for each channel. “I was fortunate enough to obtain a contract with USQ as the Online Engagement Officer in Marketing and Student Attraction which, combined with my current Diploma of Business .Foundations study, will

let me build experience and skill.” Mr McKellar said moving from working as a labourer to office work was a big change but one he really enjoyed. “The program was great and covered so many things; the people were friendly and patient so I learned quite a lot,” he said. “I applied because there weren’t too many job opportunities in my home town of Eulo in southwest Queensland so I moved to Toowoomba looking for work and thought this would be a great opportunity. “I have recently been notified that I have a further six month contract with USQ which is fantastic news and I have also considered studying at university in the future.”

Celebrating the graduation of the Indigenous trainees are (from left) Angela Ryan (supervisor), Chrissy Goodall (Work Skills trainer), Jessica Horner (program coordinator), Joshua Horner (trainee), Jacob McKellar (trainee) and Rebecca McSwiney (supervisor). Image supplied

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Trainees graduate from program