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A Parkes Christian School graduate who has enjoyed a hands-on position in local government for two years has credited TAFE NSW for helping her accelerate her career.

Sophie Field, 18, recently completed a Certificate III in Business Administration as part of a school-based traineeship with Parkes Shire Council, a unique arrangement where students work on-the-job one day per week, study at TAFE NSW online, and attend school for the remaining four days. Sophie is now continuing to work for Council in an administration role.

“I really valued the opportunity of being able to develop workplace skills and complete a qualification all before finishing school,” Sophie said.

“It’s helped me build up a strong work ethic and extend my skills in Microsoft Office programs that I can use in any career I pursue. I've also benefitted from working in a team environment which has helped to develop my interpersonal skills.

“I was able to apply the knowledge and skills I was learning at TAFE NSW on-the-job at Parkes Shire Council and I think this really helped me process what I was learning.

“I’d encourage other students entering year 11 to consider a school-based traineeship.”

Mayor of Parkes Shire Council Cr Ken Keith said, “The traineeship program has been a positive and successful experience both for the students, the workplace and the community, as it provides opportunities for young people to learn, study and work within the Parkes Shire.”

“The future of the Parkes Shire looks positive with increases in the number of traineeships being taken up by local youth. Council has more than doubled the number of traineeships offered over the past four years,” Cr Keith said.

"I would like to take this opportunity to commend Sophie for her hard work and dedication throughout her schooling and during her time working within the Economic Development team here at Council."

For information about school-based apprenticeships or traineeships at TAFE NSW, speak to your school career advisor or visit, or phone 131 601.

Media contact: Emma Curtis, TAFE NSW Communications Specialist