Year 12 student Jaidyn is NG Central's resident musician, creative and whiz at all things audio tech. We have watched him grow into a mature, genuine young man who is always looking to improving himself.
Before he came to NGC, Jaidyn found it a lot harder to commit to his studies and craved a more practical approach. After leaving his mainstream school, he temporarily attended ET Australia. While the alternative learning environment certainly suited him better, Jaidyn knew he wanted to pursue more vocational education and chose to come to NGC in 2019 to take advantage of the trades (and associated facilities) we had on offer.
"Mainstream school couldn't really support all the different ways that people learn. I would get overwhelmed in the classroom and my grades started slipping because of that. When I came here, I much preferred the learning environment; there's always a practical component to everything they teach at NGC. You can work more closely with the teachers, in smaller classes where you get more attention. That really works for me."
Jaidyn comes from a family of electricians and electrical engineers and it's clear he has inherited a natural talent for all things tech. He is currently studying Electrotechnology at Wyong TAFE alongside his HSC subjects, which he attends every Tuesday afternoon. Not content with just one specialisation, Jaidyn also participates in IT Automotive with our NG Central crew, where he has mastered fabrication skills and worked on our very own vehicle Betsy. His ability to adapt to the two environments is a real testament to his self-motivation and strong sense of responsibility.
Jaidyn's work experience placement at Karera Communications was a particular success and he was able to get a hands-on insight into the reality of the telecommunications industry. This opportunity highlighted his winning combination of curiosity, talent and a willingness to try anything and he received high praise from the entire team.
"It was such a cool experience because Karera Communications supply and install communications technology for first responders, like the CB radios for ambulances and life guards. I got to head to Bondi Beach and even meet the Bondi Rescue guys, which was awesome. I felt at home working with the technicians and programming radios and my supervisors said they felt like I'd been working there for years! They encouraged me to put the experience on my resume and want me to go back there to complete an apprenticeship."
While at NGC, Jaidyn has been able to benefit from the additional support on offer, with the school counsellor Damian available Monday to Wednesday and case workers like Lee on hand for a chat at any time. He has also made strong friendships, noting that people make an effort to understand each other, never hold a grudge and are always ready to talk things out. As an Aboriginal young man, Jaidyn has also been able to participate in specific cultural affirmation and engagement activities. He has engaged with our Aboriginal Education Program, given the Welcome to Country our 2020 NAIDOC event and taken part in the Ngaliya program which empowers Indigenous young people to connect with their culture and local community.
Alongside his audio tech expertise, Jaidyn is a keen musician who has played piano and guitar for three years now. He finds that playing and listening to music of all genres always calms him down, gives much needed headspace and provides an immersive, creative escape from the pressures of school life. We are regularly treated to his performances, including a piano number at the Year 12 2020 graduation ceremony, and bet he will be taking on the world with his talent in the not-too-distant future.
However, Jaidyn's own goals for life after school are a little less focused on super stardom! He is approaching what's to come with a level head and a willingness to take on new training opportunities in barista and cafe skills and customer service, as well as potentially pursuing hands-on electrical work.
"This school gave me a second chance when there was nowhere else I was suited to and now I have so many options. And I'd tell anyone that if you stick at it, more choices become available to you. Everyone here genuinely cares about helping you succeed and they prove that in their actions every day and in how they check in on your welfare. There's always that sense of familiarity - I know even after I graduate, I'll still be part of NGC."