Community Connect - The Student Arm of the Careers & Employability Service

Summary

The entry explains the philosophy and principals behind CC, how it was brought into being and the outcomes and impact that it has achieved to date. The summary will explain how another Service could replicate this initiative.

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Demonstrated benefit to tertiary students, graduate employers and/or tertiary institutions

Since May 2014 through to June 2016 the initiative has impacted as follows:- 4000k students engaged by CC 200 regular volunteers 100 student-led passion projects run 15+ student-led events run $37.5K raised for NGO Partners 100kg+ of recycled clothes donated 8x $1.6K Scholarships donated Internships and job offers secured by Community Connect participants as a direct result of their involvement. Testimonials from students stating that CC has enhanced wellbeing, and student experience in terms of friendship, confidence and employability. Testimonials from academics noting increased retention rates, and noticeable academic engagement and performance. Testimonials from CC Partners stating the benefits to their organisation, their incumbent volunteers and for the clients that their organisations serve.

Potentially or currently benefits the NAGCAS organisation, its members and the career development industry

Community Connect was showcased at the 2015 ANZSSA Conference in Hobart. It is to feature in forthcoming Research Journal as an example of Australian University initiative that can be replicated to achieve similar results.

A degree of innovation

Community Connect is the student-led arm of the UniSA Careers & Employability Services Volunteering and Community Engagement Program. Instead of organising things for students Community Connect assists students to empower them and give them the tools to do it for themselves. Community Connect give students the opportunity to identify issues that they feel passionate about, and help them to turn their ideas into professional, engaging and impactful projects and events. This approach allows students to make the decisions, to learn, to make mistakes, to grow and enhance your leadership skills and employability.

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