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Cadet Programme kick-starts career journey

Cadet Programme kick-starts career journey – Profile Matt Evans

Finding a career pathway with Westland Milk Products’ cadet programme is something 24-year-old Matt Evans would recommend in a heart-beat.

"I now have a clear career destination thanks to my 18 month cadetship at Westland. It has not only changed my perception of the manufacturing industry, it has fast-tracked me on my career," says Matt.

"For students looking for a career outside of university and the trades, this entry into the manufacturing and the dairy industry is a fantastic opportunity - it's gold."

Born and bred on the West Coast, Matt's journey to the cadet programme started after finishing year 13 with NCEA level 3. Following a Business Studies degree at Canterbury University, Matt started work in the Nutrition Department at Westland.

For Matt, acceptance into the cadet programme in 2013 provided a clear path towards a career in marketing. Matt's NCEA level3 in maths and sciences met the pre-requisite qualifications for the cadet programme and he hasn't had time to look back.

"It's a fantastic opportunity to learn hands-on about the manufacturing and dairy business. It's literally a crash course in the entire Westland business," he says.

"You learn fast and on the job, gaining not only a practical knowledge of how all departments function and contribute to the business, but also vital people skills."

"I recommend any school leaver with drive and desire to learn on the job in the manufacturing and dairy industry to give the cadet programme serious thought. It's a chance to kick-start your career."

Knowledge of how all the departments work and contribute to the business is invaluable in Matt's role as Sales & Marketing Assistant for Westland.

“I have an understanding of the whole business from supply chain to milk collection: knowledge and experience I could only get from the cadet programme."

Arthur Graves, the Ministry of Education’s Group Manager for Youth Guarantee said of the cadet programme: “This sort of collaboration between business and education will ensure that school leavers are highly skilled and ‘work ready’. Relevancy in education is crucial, and can only be achieved when industry are actively involved. Learning happens both inside and outside of the traditional classroom.”


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