Accelerator – Taine Julian
“The world’s your oyster.”
Those words were drummed into a group of enthusiastic Taranaki teenagers during the pilot Accelerator internship and mentoring programme, run by Taranaki Futures in partnership with the MP for New Plymouth.
And they were words that particularly hit home to Taine Julian.
“Our coaches pointed out that there are opportunities everywhere, and if something doesn’t necessary work out straight away, it’s fine, there’s always something else out there for you,” says the 17-year-old Francis Douglas Memorial College student.
Taine took part in the Accelerator programme because he saw it as a learning opportunity and also a chance to get more information on the career he is considering – chemical process engineering.
Aside from the weekly sessions where the students listened to and were led in small groups by experienced business coaches, Taine spent an hour a week at engineering and contracting organisation WorleyParsons New Zealand Ltd.
“It really confirmed what I want to do. Before I took part in the programme and went to WorleyParsons I didn’t really know what they did, but I met all the discipline managers and got to understand what the jobs involve,” Taine says.
Taine at work at Worley Parsons
As a result, Taine plans to head to Canterbury University and study towards a Bachelor of Engineering.
He says the Accelerator programme is a great way to help get some clarity about your future.
“It was fantastic having that face-to-face advice and support from the coaches – learning how they started out and what motivates them. It was a great experience and I’ve really missed it since it finished.”
WorleyParsons general manager engineering Paul Minchin agrees, and says a programme such as Accelerator would have helped him get a better understanding of engineering before he went to university.
“I didn’t do anything like this before university, and I came out not really knowing what engineering was about in the real world,” Paul says.
“Accelerator is a great opportunity to spark an interest and give the students an understanding of what engineering involves.”
Both the programme and Taine impressed Paul, and the company is keen to take part again.
“Taine asked a lot of questions and had great energy when he was with us. Hopefully he’s now got some useful knowledge before he starts at university.”