Boarders gain job-ready skills at school

Set within five hectares of manicured gardens and courtyards, PLC Sydney’s Boarding House is home to girls from Years 7 to 12. The girls benefit from being located in the heart of the school, with easy access to before and after school activities—they could be in the pool or on the tennis court before school or rehearsing in the Performing Arts Centre after school. With a co-curricular program offering more than 50 activities in the Senior School, there is something for everyone at PLC Sydney.

In years past, Boarders were often at a disadvantage when they left school and looked for employment while undertaking further study or starting out in their chosen career. Living on campus throughout their senior years meant they were unable to secure after school or weekend jobs. However, as many aspects of boarding life have evolved over time, so too has this.

PLC Sydney Boarders who are 16 years and over, have the opportunity to participate in paid work on the College grounds before and after school. Possibilities include working with Junior School students in Before School Care, assisting at the Tutoring Centre, helping the swimming coaches at the pool and supporting the Gymnastics program.

Apart from earning pocket money, there are many benefits for the girls. “Working on campus really gives the girls an opportunity for personal growth. They learn job skills and how to communicate with colleagues in a team environment. I see them grow in confidence as they take on more responsibility. The girls have to be reliable and if they are unable to attend their allocated shift, they have to find a suitable replacement—the girls understand that people are relying on them,” says Director of Boarding Ms Pauline Turner.

Year 10 Boarder, Bronte Runciman, from Comobella in northern NSW, loves to bake. In fact she has her own cake making and decorating business that she runs off her Instagram page baked_by_bronte.  “The College has been really supportive in allowing me to move my business to school. They even put in a small oven within the House so that I can bake on the weekends” says Bronte.

Bronte’s Mum, Nadine, has been blown away by the opportunities available at the school. “Bronte's doing an elective called Enterprise, so earlier this year she was able to have a stall. She actually baked 200 cupcakes and 100 macarons and iced cookies in the Boarding House and then sold them at a stall at the school. That's just definitely something that she'd never be able to do at home”, said Nadine.

Ms Turner says that Bronte’s cakes are beautiful. “I think all our students get inspired by watching girls achieve their dreams. For some girls, they watch for a while and then they'll try things. It's just a matter of seeing there are options out there for them to take up.”

Nadine Runciman said there are endless opportunities for her daughter, Bronte, who is able to pursue her business dreams at PLC Sydney

One of Bronte’s many wonderful creations

“The opportunity for paid employment on College grounds allows the students to work in a safe environment, learning skills that will set them up for employment once they leave school. Being able to add these skills to their resume allows them to gain part-time work while attending university or assists in developing their career post-secondary school.”