CCMA kickstarts six graduate careers during COVID-19

May 6, 2021 BY

Corangamite CMA CEO John Riddiford, alongside some Senior Management Team members and the six new Graduates. Photo: Supplied.

THE Corangamite Catchment Management Authority (CCMA) has launched the careers of six young alumnus despite the pandemic leaving limited employment opportunities.

The six new full-time positions were created in October 2020 for graduates entering various industries including environmental water and strategic planning, finance and communications.

Among the six graduates were two former Deakin University students from Geelong and Colac.

Since beginning her role at the CCMA, Geelong local Shaya Kaartinen Price has helped to deliver the recent Barwon Estuary Monitoring Program.

“I have been working closely with the local community delivering the CCMA citizen science program where we empower Barwon Heads and Ocean Grove community members to monitor the health of our waterways,” she said.

Ms Kaartinen Price said commencing her career with the CCMA had been a dream come true.

“I have grown up in and around the Otway region, I have always been a fan of the CCMA and their science informed approach to their on-ground works,” she said.

“If 16-year-old me knew 23-year-old me would be working at the CCMA, she would be over the moon.

“Being employed with the CCMA has helped foster my passion for working with the community and understanding their needs.”

The initiative received funding through the Victorian Government’s ‘Youth Employment Program’ and has provided the CCMA with the ability to provide the six graduates with valuable experience to kickstart their careers.

Beginning last year, the graduates completed work remotely during the pandemic but have since been provided the opportunity to gain on-the-job training in their desired industries.

CCMA chief executive officer John Riddiford said the initiative was able to give participating graduates a “foot-in-the-door” during difficult times.

“Whilst the COVID-19 pandemic has presented many challenges, including these graduates starting their roles remotely, it is evident it has not dimmed their eagerness and enthusiasm to learn,” he said.

“One of the most critical things to come out of this program is the ability and impact we have had in upskilling these young graduates.

“We are delighted to be able to provide them with industry experience ready to continue into the workforce.”

Thank you for supporting local journalism!