These are the most common types of WIL placements. Students complete a 450 hour unpaid placement (full-time for 12 weeks (or a part time equivalent)). During this time students become fully integrated into the workplace and complete projects that demonstrate meaningful placement outcomes. Any part-time work must be work around the WIL placement. In some circumstances an industry host might be supportive of a student doing less than five days a week, but over a longer placement.
Students completing an unpaid placement are fully covered by University insurance for the duration of their placement. This makes it far more likely that an organisation will be willing to host a student.
Paid placements including scholarships, Summer Vacation programs and internships offered by large companies are accepted as WIL options (if they meet the 450 hour WIL requirement). There are a number of paid scholarships available to ECU students and to all university students Australia wide. These opportunities are to be arranged and applied for by the student. They will not be arranged by the WIL Coordinator.
Prior to applying it is recommended that you confirm with the School’s WIL coordinator that the opportunity is WIL compatible before applying.
ECU’s WIL policy allows for students to do a WIL placement aligned to their full-time job. In the case of the WIL program run in the School of Science, students who are already working in industry and wish to align a WIL placement to that role, will need to demonstrate that the type and level of work they do is relevant to the degree they are studying. The assessment outcomes for the placement units will be contextualised from a ‘how WIL helped prepare me for industry’ approach to that of ‘how WIL helped me align my industry role to my course discipline knowledge’.
There are a number of ways that students can be placed with an industry host, but the preferred approach (in order of preference) is a follows;
This is a very common and very reasonable question, especially for students going out to an industry placement. The short answer to this is ‘it is up to you’. Each semester a varying number of students receive job offers directly from their industry host, regardless of whether that organisations is big or small. In most cases the organisation was probably not thinking of hiring a new staff member, but were so impressed with the potential shown by the WIL student that they were not willing to let that student go.
Most host organisations do not directly hire, but the critical nature of WIL is that it can significantly shorten the gap between graduating from university and landing your first job. Feedback from our previous WIL students indicate that not only is the timeframe for job searching reduced, but successful WIL students are more likely to get the job they want as their first job.
Many students are worried about what specific technical skills they need before going to an industry placement, be it coding languages, lab techniques, chemistry, mathematics etc etc. In reality, for most placements the host organisations are looking the following attributes and capabilities (in no particular order);
Are you reliable, approachable, a good communicator, work well with others, have a talent for learning and applying new things? Most industry hosts are looking at the potential a student can demonstrate, alongside their purely technical skills. Most organisations tell us that they expect to spend time training up new staff in terms of demonstrable technical capabilities, but they are less willing to take a risk on a potential employee who has not been able to demonstrate professionalism, communication, reliability and honesty.
The school advises students to start thinking about WIL as early as possible, and consider the following;
If you are interested in becoming a WIL student, please contact your WIL Coordinator
Computing and Security email@example.com
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