Pro bono I Gadens Indigenous Intern News – December 2017
7 December 2017
This edition of Indigenous Intern News will give an overview of the CareerTrackers program; how it works; its aims, and the support and opportunities it provides.
In 2015, Gadens signed a 10×10 partnership with CareerTrackers to demonstrate their commitment in providing internships to Indigenous interns for another 10 years. Since then, 19 interns have completed rotations at the firm.
CareerTrackers is a national non-profit organisation which creates internship opportunities for Indigenous tertiary students and is based on the INROADS African-American model from the United States. The CareerTrackers model has been adapted to address Indigenous disadvantage in Australia.
Pre-professional Indigenous university students are linked to private sector employees to participate in paid internships. Partner companies are selected based on the intern’s career interests and the compatibility between degree and industry. The aim of the program is to convert interns into full-time employees upon the completion of their tertiary study.
Prior to and during the internship rotations, CareerTrackers provides extensive support to students through student advisors; employment workshops; networking events; and specialised support to enhance interview skills, CV compilation and interpersonal skills.
Student advisors provide support to interns throughout their degree and internships. Frequent meetings are held to ensure students are achieving optimal results at university and making the most of their internship.
Annually, all students receive a minimum of 187.5 hours of leadership development training. Many of these hours are made up at the Leadership Development Institute – an annual event which brings together interns from Australia-wide to participate in a variety of workshops hosted by CEOs and community leaders, and to network with fellow interns and industry professionals. This training is also completed at Program Days which run before the beginning of winter and summer rotations.
Throughout every internship rotation, interns are required to set workplace goals and objectives with the support of their managers or supervisors. This is to ensure interns are receiving relevant work, all the while making a positive contribution to the partner company. At the completion of the rotation, managers and supervisors complete performance evaluations to ensure interns can continue to foster their strengths and improve their weaknesses for the purposes of further professional development.
There are currently 619 interns and 299 alumni of the program. As the program continues to thrive, corporate Australia benefits from the inclusion of First Nations people and the irreplaceable resources, skills and experiences each individual offers.