Simon puts his mind to it

If you’re interested in earning while you learn and gain a qualification, a traineeship is worth considering.

When you’re prepared to work hard, you can achieve anything in life. Simon Zhang is testament to that.

Simon undertook a traineeship while studying Year 12 VCAL at Westall Secondary College.

In addition to completing his traineeship at Daniel Son café, Simon took on a second job at a convenience store to support his mum.

“My mum isn’t well enough to work, so I contribute to the rent and bills,” says Simon.

“If you put in the effort and try your best, you can definitely achieve what you want.”

Through the traineeship with Daniel Son café, Simon picked up a range of practical skills, from how to check deliveries and take orders, to making the perfect coffee shot.

At the same time, Simon completed Chisholm’s Certificate III in Business.

The qualification provides foundational skills and knowledge to help kickstart your career in business.

Among other skills, you learn how to design and produce spreadsheets, write simple documents and organise schedules.

You also learn about communicating in the workplace and working as a team.

Simon says it’s a great course for those who are looking to gain a solid understanding of basic business practices.

“If you are interested in office work, this course will definitely help you to understand the basics,” he says.

“I actually wanted to be a chef when I was younger, but after doing work experience in the kitchen, I decided that wasn’t for me.

“I prefer being front of house, talking to customers and making drinks.”

Simon found the teachers at Chisholm to be very helpful and encouraging, and he did well in the TAFE learning environment.

For his efforts, Simon was nominated as Trainee of the Year at the 2023 Chisholm Education Awards.

In nominating him, his teacher commended Simon on his resilience and ability to overcome challenges.

Simon ended up completing his traineeship early and stayed on at Daniel Son in a full-time position.

He says completing the course and finding a stable job were his greatest achievements.

Simon is still exploring what he wants to do next, but says the Certificate III in Business equipped him with foundational skills to build his confidence in the workplace.

When Simon is not at work, he enjoys gardening and growing flowers and vegetables, as well as playing video games.