Working Experience News
Published by Quarko on 2018-05-05 in Pop
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Hi, Marco here, 16 years lived with highs and lows, a lot of suffering. In a couple of months my third year grammar school will be over. It's been decided that we, Italian adolescents between 16 and 18 of age, we have to complete a working experience project by the end of high school. Some think this is a great idea, of genial stature, some believe this is crap.
I can tell you about my own experience. For a week I've been sent to a public library in Bologna, together with a school mate of mine. I've spent 50 hours in total working as a library clerk: tidying books, helping kids with reading sessions, and longing for my lunch break... but then came a problem, and it showed up on the third day, when presentations were over, and there were no new book shelves to discover: I didn't know what to do anymore, I sat on a chair and event lunch breaks became neverending agonies! There must be a reason. Either there's an organisation issue within the library or the working experience project has some deficiencies. Since I'm sure the library personnel are great people full of passion for books and their profession, I believe the problem lies on a basic misunderstanding of the working experience project. Why is it so?
Obviously, there must be a wrong idea passed from employer to trainee. We students are happy because we do not go to school for a week, but does this hold true for our teachers or for the librarian who had me there for the experience? The question is legitimate: are these working experience projects a great innovation excellent for our own good, or are they just an incredibly good political intuition?
Surely, I've learnt new and interesting things with this experience! Now, I know how to put books on ordered shelves, how they enter the library and are categorised before being put on display. Great. But, will this be of use when I'll start working for real? More: did I need one week of this experience to learn these few things? We are asked to study one hundred years of history in two hours (with dates, people, wars, revolutions, etc.) and yet they send us sorting books out for an entire week...
Don't take me wrong, I'm trying to be positive and not super critical, but I do not believe librarians are busy doing what I did in that week! So, why didn't I get to work the way they normally do?
I am aware that in one week per year I will never mature a full comprehension of any work environment, but thanks to that week I, an adolescent in education, had a chance to live a new experience, to relate with colleagues and employers. Not with classmates or teachers for a change! This working experience project was all about experimenting and consolidating human relationships: now, that's something!
Many aspects in these projects need improving: in the future it would be nice to choose one's own career path, live a richer training more related with one's interests, have an eyes opening experience helpful to understand the world we live in.
Maybe, in a few years, these projects will be so good that every student will be happy and satisfied, and will be part of the indispensable curriculum of every Italian student.

Marco, 16 years old, Castel Guelfo (Italy)