PHOTOS: 'Ranger' job seekers preped for work
WANNABE worker Kai-Shar has learnt she can't handle a whipper snipper, or any automatic gardening tools actually, but she's still hoping to land a job outdoors - preferably with plants.
Kai-Shar was one of eight to graduate from the Gidarjil Sea Rangers program after six months of study in conservation and land management.
It was the first time the $168,000 program, funded by the State Government and designed to help young people become job ready, ran in Gladstone and now it's time for those eight students to head out into the workforce.
For Kai-Shar that means scouring the job market in the hopes of finding something that suits her skills.
While she has a passion for the environment and strong knowledge of the area, Kai-Shar - the only girl in the program -- admits physical coordination isn't her forte.
"I wasn't allowed to use some of the equipment like a whipper snipper or the brush cutters," Kai-Shar said.
"But I can dig holes like a pro."
During the program the trainees tried their hand at everything from rubbish collection to studying and restoring different environments and eco-systems.
One of the program's coordinators Peter Brockhurst said in a town like Gladstone, skills and qualifications in environmental conservation put them in a good position to secure meaningful work they would enjoy.
"There are a whole range of jobs they can go to after this program," Mr Brockhurst said.
"Most importantly the program teaches them life skills and makes them 'job ready'."
Funding for the unique program, developed in partnership with Central Queensland University, came from the recently re-instated Skilling Queenslanders for Work training programs.