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Jordan's career blooms with TAFE Queensland

Floristry apprentice Jordan Dowd has gained the confidence to compete in the WorldSkills Queensland Regional Competition thanks to her TAFE Queensland training.

"I've always liked flowers and gardening, and helping my mum in the garden developed my interest. When I saw an ad to study floristry, I thought I'd love to learn more about the industry, different flowers, and plants," explained Jordan.

Studying the Certificate III in Floristry (SFL30115), Jordan attends block training at TAFE Queensland's South Bank campus, learning the skills she needs to take her passion for flowers into a floristry profession.

"This course has enhanced my passion for floristry, and learning all the different flower names, conditions they grow in, and how to handle them are things I never knew about flowers – and it's so interesting."

Jordan’s passion and floristry skills are growing thanks to TAFE Queensland's hands-on training, which allows her to thrive as a florist at her job at a floristry in Toowoomba.

"I love the hands-on training. It makes learning a lot easier for me, and I love the assignment work; organising my thoughts and putting them down on paper is easy," continues Jordan.

Her teacher, Lyn Philip, also encourages and supports Jordan with decades of industry experience and knowledge that she eagerly passes on to her students.

"Lyn covers all floristry bases when teaching us. From how to sketch your designs, prepare quotes, sell products, and create hand-tied, wired, or base-set bouquets."

"She answers our questions and makes time for students, furthering our knowledge even more. I can even email Lyn outside of class, and she’s more than happy to answer me," she said.

"I'm learning more and more floristry skills about flowers and caring for them and then putting it into practice, so I understand what goes into it."

Jordan also credits her classmates for helping to further her knowledge and skills – setting her on a successful career path.

"It's a very open, welcoming, and comforting environment, and everybody is happy to chat, share ideas, answer questions, and laugh. They're lovely people, and because we're all in the same industry, we share the same passions."

"Thanks to TAFE Queensland’s hands-on training, I’ve gone from being passionate about flowers to making different arrangements and bouquets and arranging flowers for church services and corporate events," explained Jordan.

With confidence in her abilities, Jordan has entered the WorldSkills Queensland Regional Competition and test her skills against other apprentice florists.

During the competition, she’ll create beautiful floral displays in a time-pressure environment as she's assessed on her floristry, artistry and technical skills.

"I've never entered a competition, and it's a little nerve-wracking. But Lyn and the TAFE team have given me more than enough skills and confidence to go in there and at least put my best foot forward."

"I'm going to show up, look at the flowers, go with the flow, and do whatever feels right."

Held in Brisbane in April 2024, the regional competition will see Jordan and other apprentices complete hands-on assignments creating floral displays in a time-pressure environment, putting their technical floristry skills and ability on display for assessment.

Winners of the regional contests may represent Queensland at the national competition, where they can represent Australia in their respective trade.

Regardless of where she places in WorldSkills, Jordan recommends anyone wanting to become a florist apply to study with TAFE Queensland.

"I'd recommend people study here because the teachers are so helpful. They are knowledgeable and happy to explain things in a way that benefits you; they won't leave you with nothing, and they make it such a comforting environment."

"They genuinely care about the next generation of florists. Anyone contemplating a career in this field should consider TAFE Queensland first and foremost. It's such a great environment, and I'm improving so much while working in the career of my dreams," concluded Jordan.