With young people facing ever-increasing career challenges in today’s competitive job market, Gateway is a fantastic way to blend conventional school study with workplace learning and experience. It is a programme for career exploration that gives students the opportunity to gain experience and credibility that can be used when applying for tertiary education and employment.

Years 12 and 13

At Geraldine High School, Gateway is an exciting subject choice that welcomes applications from students entering Years 12 and 13. Our students spend one day per week learning and gaining practical skills at a local business where they gain valuable experience and invaluable relationships with potential employers and vital industry links.

Further to this, students are required to complete academic studies in industry-related Unit Standards (Levels 1-3) as well as continuing to study conventional school subjects and sitting Achievement Standards or Unit Standards that contribute towards their NCEA qualification.

Students accepted into the Gateway programme are:

  • Motivated to succeed
  • Organised and capable of balancing and achieving at both work and school
  • Possess the maturity to represent themselves and their school appropriately and well

Our students are well-supported with a dedicated Gateway teacher, four hours of Gateway class time for study and catch-up plus regular contact with employers and home.

Student Perspective

“After being inspired by my sister’s enthusiasm towards Gateway, I decided it was my chance to grab the opportunity and hopefully experience what my sister did – which I have!

Ever since I was a little girl I have had a strong passion for horses and Gateway has allowed me to work out that I can have a career with them.

Through taking Gateway in 2012, I confirmed that I am keen to work in the equine industry. My first placement was at a riding stable; here I had the chance to learn how to work with horses in a holistic manner. However, I found that this area of the equine industry was not exactly what I wanted, so I decided to have a crack at the harness racing industry. This is when I found my dream job.

I have been able to learn the ropes of the harness racing industry with the support of my school and have even gained my Stablehand Licence which allows me to drive the horses in trials.

I was accepted into Gateway again in 2013 and my learning has continued. On a practical level, there is more to racing than meets the eye and there is a lot of time and preparation involved. Academically, I am completing Level 3 Unit Standards in Equine Care as well as my conventional school subjects – Level 3 English, Level 3 Biology, Level 3 Art and Level 3 Agriculture.

Being able to take part in the Gateway programme has opened many doors and has given me the chance to gain relevant credits towards my NCEA Level 3, as well as gain on-the-job experience before heading out into the workforce. Gateway has also given me the chance to grow in confidence in everything I do. It is definitely a course that I recommend to everyone.”

Victoria - Year 13 Student

“The Gateway programme at Geraldine High School has not only given me experience in the work force, but has also widened my opportunities for a future career.

Before joining the Gateway programme, I had no idea what I wanted to do for a career. All I knew was that I wanted to travel the world and not be stuck in a job that I dreaded going to each day.

At the beginning of 2013 my Gateway placement was with Fonterra. I got to experience first-hand the daily tasks, duties, responsibilities and on-goings within the Administration Department. I got to experience the different job titles within the Administrative team from Administration Manager to Receptionist to Human Resources. Although the admin staff are wonderful, I discovered I need a more open environment rather than an office. This discovery led to my placement at the Mount Dobson Ski Academy.

Once a week I join the Mount Dobson ski instructors for training. Having the opportunity to work with these instructors is an amazing experience and privilege as they are from all parts of the globe – North America, Germany, Canada and the Czech Republic. I am lucky to hear first-hand of their experiences, opportunities and travels over the years.

This Gateway placement has helped me to discover and pursue my dream career which combines my passion for skiing with travel and will allow me to gain my Level 1 Ski Instructors Certificate which is recognised around the world.

Through Gateway I also had the opportunity to go to the Queenstown Resort College career week. This experience allowed me to gain knowledge on relevant tertiary education for myself after High School and set career goals for the future.

I am thankful that Geraldine High School acknowledges the Gateway programme as a subject for students. The Gateway programme has provided me with experience, knowledge and opportunities I would otherwise have not gained, as well as giving me the confidence to achieve my goals.”

Nicole - Year 13 Student also studying Level 3 English, Level 3 History and Level 3 Food and Hospitality.