Five students at Waimea College have produced a card game being made and sold throughout the country to demonstrate the alternative paths available for careers other than by attending University.
“We saw there was a problem for students who didn’t want to continue down the school to university learning track,” said business studies student Bree Anderson.
The business studies students understood that students still wanted a good career, but they don’t necessarily want to obtain a degree to make that happen.
They also recognised that the region has a lot of primary industries with a multitude of roles that students don’t know exist. Covid demonstrated these types of roles don’t go away, people still need to eat so jobs in those industries are vital.
At the start of the year, the students had the idea for an event to help bring recognition to trade and vocational training subjects. Teachers Monique van Tiggele and Naomi Chapman applied to the Ministry of Education for an Education to Employment Contestable Fund and were granted $3000 to celebrate vocational subject achievements at the school.
The onset of Covid meant an event was unable to take place and the retraction of the grant provided a real-life scenario for the students to work and learn from.
Their focus moved to the exposure, to students, of what’s available in the primary job market. After an initial reach out to Horticulture New Zealand through teacher Naomi Chapman the students brainstormed with the representatives from Horticulture New Zealand. They decided a game would be a good resource to meet their target audience’s, intermediate and college students, needs.
“We thought a game might be a bit more interesting rather than simply having another teacher voicing what the opportunities are,” said Bree.
They added that an app wouldn’t have worked as well, a card game like the one they’ve built forces students interaction along with a chance for observation by teachers.
“What student wouldn’t rather play a game than be lectured at or do book work,” said student Moab Heynekamp.
The five students, who worked very well together, each brought their own talents to the enterprise. Part of which was raising their own $3000.
One of the students, Toby Collett, designed the logo. They had to learn how to use accounting software to provide invoices and did the research behind the information on the cards which represent 40 different primary industry roles.
Horticulture New Zealand also provided a $500 sponsorship for start-up costs, printing of the game in Auckland and distribution.
“These students have done amazing things with little guidance, taking the initiative and running with it,” said business studies teacher Yvonne Daly.
With the games already being produced and sold around the country, the next focus for the students is submitting a review of their project and a view of their sales channels. If those do well the next step will be to pitch their Youth Enterprise Scheme (Y.E.S) company, Pathways to Primary, at the regional finals.