Alexis Mackin describes herself as a “Plan B” kind of girl — that attitude has served her well and helped her ride out the challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Alexis is just 20 and already has two certificate IIIs, a dual diploma, and a pathway to her dream career clearly carved out ahead of her — all while using her “back up plan” to keep her afloat financially.

During high school Alexis completed a Certificate III in Community Services (CHC32015) via TAFE at School. Luckily, she was able to rely on these skills to maintain employment throughout her studies, especially while hospitality businesses were doing it tough during the COVID-19 pandemic.

While studies in childcare came first for the motivated young woman, Alexis now says this is her “Plan B” while she forges ahead with a successful career in the hospitality and events industry.

At the end of Year 12 and her TAFE at School program, Alexis was excited to pursue a career in hospitality and events. The Queensland Government’s Free TAFE for Year 12 graduates program allowed her the opportunity to return to study and kick start her dream career at no cost.

Free TAFE for Year 12 graduates gives school leavers the opportunity to learn the work-ready skills they need, while gaining connections and experience that will set them up for long-term success in a competitive job market.

“I knew childcare wasn’t my preferred choice and I'd heard about the free TAFE opportunity so I enrolled in a Certificate III in Hospitality (SIT30616), which ended up being a stepping stone to a dual Diploma in Event Management / Diploma of Hospitality Management (SIT50316/SIT50416),” Alexis said.

“Throughout my journey, childcare has been my backup and it's served me well, but I'm so grateful that I was able to make a start in my preferred career thanks to the free TAFE program."

“TAFE training is amazing – not only have I learned so much but the teachers were also able to help me find employment in the industry. I would recommend TAFE to anyone – especially to school leavers who have the chance to gain a qualification at no cost. It could end up being your Plan B, or it could lead you right to your dream career.”

Alexis attended classes at TAFE Queensland’s Toowoomba campus.

“My teachers were so helpful,” Alexis said.

“The programs are really well developed – it's just the right mix of hands on and theory, and just the right amount of challenge to keep students motivated.”

Alexis is currently employed in the childcare and hospitality industries, and hopes to reinvigorate her employment in events as soon as possible.

More about Free TAFE Training for Year 12 Graduates More about TAFE at School

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