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Work prospects looking good for PTW student Areerat

By Fiona West | May 11, 2023

Areerat was a self-confessed “workaholic” in Thailand. With a degree in Business Administration (HR) and years of management experience, the 39-year-old couldn’t wait to continue her career when she moved to Fairfield to marry her Australian husband in January 2022.

But with “zero English” and no local work experience, she soon realised she would have to start from scratch, and learning English was her number one priority. Areerat enrolled in the Adult Migrant English Program (AMEP)* at Navitas Skilled Futures Fairfield, and her strong work ethic soon saw her English – and job prospects – improve.

“In Thailand I’m very busy, I’m a workaholic,” Areerat said.

“In Australia I can do office work, I can say I am expert, I can do it. The only thing stopping me at the moment is English. I am getting better but I need to learn more to get a good job.”

While working on her English over the past year, Areerat found employment as a kitchen hand, then as a masseur and beauty assistant, leading to a role as receptionist at the massage business.  She also got her driver’s licence and became an UberEats delivery driver in her spare time.

In January this year Areerat also enrolled in the Pathways to Business Administration course at NSF Fairfield, which gave her the confidence and skills to search for work, write a resume, improve her communication and teamwork, and understand how to prepare for job interviews. She said the course also gave her the opportunity to make new friends, understand the Australian workplace and identify her strengths and areas for improvement.

Her work placement at a local real estate agency was so impressive that the manager said she could come back any time. But Areerat said without sales and real estate experience, and while still improving her English, she didn’t feel confident pursuing a real estate career, but was very keen to find a job in a more familiar work environment.

“It was not suitable for me. To work in sales you have to be expert in this and get people to trust you, and understand the business. In this country everything is hard for me,” she said. “Maybe I know a lot of things in Thailand but not here, so the only thing stopping me working in a job I can do is English. I want to improve English because the English is not good yet – some grammar, talking not perfect, so I want to learn more.”

But while Areerat believes she still has some way to go, she knows she has learned a lot and is enjoying the journey.

“At the beginning when I’ve arrived here I can’t talk, I was zero English and I can’t go out because it is Covid. I just want to start my new life in Australia,” she said.

“As soon as I could enrol I came to Navitas. It is a really nice place, I have a really good teacher; she is really kind, teaching everything on English, culture and details and everything I like. “

“I also like to meet people from another country so we can share our story, we can share a lot and know each other from another country. I am looking forward to the future.”

*The AMEP is funded by the Australian Government, Department of Home Affairs.

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