Got a Trade Big Bus Tours 2016

 | Events

MITO recently took part in the Got a Trade Big Bus Tours - a day for over 50 workplaces in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Christchurch to open their doors and familiarise secondary school students and careers advisors with on-the-job training. The event was part of Got a Trade? Got it Made! – a nationwide campaign aiming to raise awareness of learning and career opportunities in New Zealand’s trades and services. 

Among the 750 students who took part, many were unsure of their future career plans and were keen to see some of the opportunities available. Others needed no convincing that on-the-job training was for them and were interested in finding out more about their chosen industry. 

16 year old Karl Bautista from Western Springs College has had a life-long passion for cars and a desire to study without debt, which led him to participate in the Big Bus Tours. “I want a hands-on job where I can earn while I learn!” says Karl. “I would love to be an automotive technician. I’ve always been really interested in cars – I had a huge collection of toy cars when I was growing up!” The day not only fueled his passion, it also taught him a lot about how industry training works. “I now feel more confident about pursuing my chosen career.”

Karl’s classmate, 15 year old Thomas Parekowhai, was still weighing up the options and saw this day as an opportunity to explore some of the possibilities. “I was really keen to come on the tours because I’m still unsure what career I want and I thought it would be interesting to see all of the different options that are available.” After visiting several employers in Auckland, including AB Equipment - a nationwide organisation specialising in supplying and servicing materials handling, construction and environmental equipment, Thomas thinks that an apprenticeship is a good option for him. “Now I think a career in the trades and services industries would be pretty cool! It was really motivating looking at all of the massive machinery at AB Equipment and learning how it is used. They get to do such a range of interesting jobs from maintaining to refurbishing to operating the equipment.”

It was not only the students who found the day valuable. John Oliff, a teacher from Rosehill College, thought the Big Bus Tours were a great way of giving students an insight into apprenticeships. “I think that the Got a Trade? Got it Made! campaign is a fantastic way to show students that careers in the trades and services industries are a viable option. This is something that needs to be emphasised in schools more and communicated to parents – it’s been lacking for too many years. Apprenticeships need to be seen as an option that have as much merit as going to university.”

New Zealand’s second annual Got a Trade Week was held from 22-26 August 2016. For more information on Got a Trade? Got it Made! visit