Napier and Hastings students attend Futureopoly careers day

Emma Robertson of Regal Furniture gives Noah Smith (left) and Zac Perfect (right), both Grade 13 students at Tamatea High School, some furniture tips. Photo/Warren Buckland

School career days used to be held in the hallways of neighborhood schools.

Now students have Futureopoly – an interactive career journey experience formatted similarly to the popular board game Monopoly – which took place at Hastings Showgrounds last week.

Over 600 rangatahi from Napier and Hastings schools and over 30 local employers from multiple sectors participated.

Ashley Toye, coordinator of the Graeme Dingle Foundation Hawke’s Bay High School, was behind the event that created it more than three years ago, originally naming it Flaxopoly.

The mastermind behind Futureopoly, Ashley Toye, Graeme Dingle Foundation Hawke's Bay High School Coordinator.  Photo/Warren Buckland
The mastermind behind Futureopoly, Ashley Toye, Graeme Dingle Foundation Hawke’s Bay High School Coordinator. Photo/Warren Buckland

She first created the career path experience for Flaxmere College, and as more schools became interested, the name changed to Futureopoly.

“It creates an environment and empowers high school students to connect, be inspired, and feel empowered,” Toye said.

A sort of game board has been set up inside the Hastings Showgrounds showroom and on the grass next to the venue.

Futureopoly uses motivators to inspire students to engage. The “game board” was organized by sector, relating to professional streams, with local employers in that sector representing each square.

Programmed's James Brady helps Flaxmere College student Ema Jones learn about the ups and downs of the paint industry.  Photo/Warren Buckland
Programmed’s James Brady helps Flaxmere College student Ema Jones learn about the ups and downs of the paint industry. Photo/Warren Buckland

The students divided into groups, spending 12 minutes in each sector doing activities and interviews, earning houses and hotels.

After the 12 minutes are up, a die is rolled and all groups advance with the same number of spaces.

After 60 minutes, the game ends and students then have 30 minutes of free time to visit businesses they haven’t been to and revisit those that interest them.

They can still earn houses and hotels during this time.

The Futureopoly careers event was held at HB Showgrounds, Hastings.  Photo/Warren Buckland
The Futureopoly careers event was held at HB Showgrounds, Hastings. Photo/Warren Buckland

Students can then head to the rewards area to claim their rewards and check out the community chest before returning to school.

Graeme Dingle Foundation chief executive Alison Prins explained that when students engage, they become informed.

“It inspires them to make career decisions that align with their hopes and values,” Prins said.

From left to right: Bailey Wilkins, Katie Moorcock and Hannah Pilmer participate in the Futureopoly game.  Photo/Warren Buckland
From left to right: Bailey Wilkins, Katie Moorcock and Hannah Pilmer participate in the Futureopoly game. Photo/Warren Buckland

Asked about the gaming aspect of the event, Bailey Wilkins of Tamatea High School said, “It’s awesome and so competitive.”

Classmates Katie Moorcock and Hannah Pilmer agreed that because it was like a game, it was much easier to ask questions and participate in activities because everyone was involved.

Left to right: Hastings Boys students Justin Van Heerden, Oliver Brewer and Reuben O'Connor learn new hairstyles from MPhosis stylists Jess McDermott and Tash Bird.  Photo/Warren Buckland
Left to right: Hastings Boys students Justin Van Heerden, Oliver Brewer and Reuben O’Connor learn new hairstyles from MPhosis stylists Jess McDermott and Tash Bird. Photo/Warren Buckland

MPhosis hairdressers were present at the event as part of the Hair and Beauty sector.

Owner and Executive Director of MPhosis Hair Studio, Tash Bird, said, “The students were amazing; even when it wasn’t something they saw themselves doing, they tried.

“And they supported each other within their groups, which was nice to see.”

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