Claudia and Georgia Thacker enrolled in TAFE NSW together, learned valuable industry-specific skills and now they’re planning to grow a business together. However, the girls didn’t exactly arrange for this cooperative career trajectory.
“I had wanted to study floristry for a while but hadn’t found the right time to commit to it,” Claudia says. “Georgia signed me up to go to the open nights and after coming along with me she decided it was something she wanted to try as well, so we signed up the next day together.”
Studying Floristry at TAFE NSW provided the Thacker sisters with the flexibility they needed to fit study into their lives.
“Our teachers were always understanding when we had work or personal commitments and gave us plenty of opportunity to complete our work at our own pace,” Georgia says. “It meant we could continue working throughout the year without the combination of work and study impacting our personal life.”
Georgia explained that it wasn’t just the teachers who had enhanced learning experiences throughout the girls’ Floristry course.
“The people you meet - everyone that comes to class all come from so many different walks of life but with the same passion and everyone is willing to share their skills and experience.
Floristry courses at TAFE NSW can provide a pathway to work as a floral designer in a range of floristry-related business, including retail floristry shops, high-end floristry studios and floristries which specialise in corporate or special events.
But what really resonated with Georgia and empowered her to realise her floristry dreams?
"The practicality. You learned real-life skills for the workforce.
“There are so many little things you don’t think you need to know but our teachers always made sure we were prepared for any situation. They even helped provide feedback on florist related jobs we did outside our study, which made the world of difference in our preparation and execution.”
Claudia was just as glowing with her course’s teacher assessments.
“We couldn’t say enough good things about our teachers, they are amazing and have so much experience to learn from.
“Wendy and Katina (teachers) give students freedom to express themselves, whilst ensuring we were always following correct techniques and meeting industry standards. They pushed us to try new things and supported our big ideas.”
"Have courage in your decision,” Georgia says. “Whilst most people supported us in our journey there are always some people that will doubt whether you’re making the right decision. If it feels right to you, do it and it’s never too late to try something new.”
Georgia also offered a tip to those thinking about making the leap into studying.
“On a practical note - prepare financially, as cutting down on work and picking up study, where you become passionate about projects, can be costly if you aren’t careful.”
Having successfully cleared their study-related hurdles, the Thacker sisters are now well poised to take the next step in their blossoming floristry career.
“We have started a business,” says Claudia, “and are taking on some smaller projects. Our dream is to own our own shop and do events on the side, but we want to take the time to get it right and do it well.”