Earning a scholarship to one of the leading hospitality colleges in Australia might be a lot of pressure for some students, but Georgia-May Gallea is certainly no ordinary student.
The 2016 Magdalene Catholic High School graduate won one of the 15 Get Real Events Experience scholarships to Kenvale College, which are offered in partnership with a number of industry establishments. In addition to receiving a scholarship to study Hospitality and Event Management at Kenvale College, Georgia-May received a week's workplace experience in a hospitality or events environment - helping her to further build her skills and knowledge.
Having started at Kenvale College at the beginning of 2017, we checked in with Georgia-May to see how life in the classroom and at work was going.
Get Real Events Experience Scholarship - supporting career paths
Georgia-May first learnt about the scholarship after opening an email titled 'Are you interested in events?' from her high school careers adviser. At the time, she was in Year 11 and wasn't looking into any form of higher education, but the subject piqued her interest.
"I thought it would be a good experience. Even if I didn't win, I got to experience the industry, go through interviews and get a bit of a leg up so I can see through the doors," she said.
Of course, Georgia-May was an ideal candidate for the scholarship, with a clear passion for the events industry and the self-drive to develop different skills. Upon learning that she was a recipient, Georgia-May said it had make her more focused than ever on her career path.
"Doing the scholarship inspired me more to get into the events industry and that passion has pushed me to try and do well in college," she said.
Combining study and work - the perfect mix
Georgia-May currently splits her time between her classes on the Combined Advanced Diploma of Event Management and Advanced Diploma of Hospitality Management and working at the InterContinental Sydney as a food and beverage attendant.
Although her dream role is working in event management for concerts and music festivals, developing a keen eye on the hospitality side of events has a number of benefits for Georgia-May.
"Getting to look at everything that is going on behind the scenes for hospitality helps me on the events side - it all connects together and it will help me in the future," she said.
Georgia-May is having remarkable success thus far and notes that this is down to her lovely fellow students, "approachable" lecturers, and the "positive" Kenvale College community. In fact, even her employer is seeing major improvements in Georgia-May's performance.
"I'm able to apply everything that I've learnt at school to what I'm doing in the industry. It just makes everything easier. My employers have even said to me that I'm progressing really quickly and faster than employees who aren't studying," she explained.
What's next for Georgia-May?
As the Combined Advanced Diploma is a two-year course, Georgia-May has plenty more time to build her skills and knowledge while at Kenvale College. This said, she wants to make every post a winner and help others move into their dream careers as well.
"The whole thing with Kenvale College is that it's more of a community than everything else. Everyone here is so lovely and you're not a number like at a university," she said.
In addition to her Kenvale studies, Georgia-May's work at the InterContinental Sydney will prove vital as she develops more contacts and gains critical experience.
If you would like to learn more about the Get Real Events Experience Scholarship or the Combined Advanced Diploma, feel free to get in touch with our helpful team today - we look forward to hearing from you!