Adelaide man Ben Weir is grateful for the career leg-up he received after completing his studies and a stint of work experience with the Department of Defence.
The 24 year old has just completed a Bachelor of Law and a Bachelor of International Studies at the University of Adelaide, during which time he did six months of hands-on work with the Defence Science and Technology Organisation.
“I chose to apply for work experience with Defence as I wanted to gain some practical experience compared to the theoretical nature of university assignments,” Mr Weir said.
During the placement Mr Weir was part of a team which developed the “Southeast Asia Pre-Deployment Handbook”, which aims to give Defence personnel a better understanding of the country they will potentially be deployed to.
“My tasks included research across numerous sources, drafting sections of the document and general contributions to the team, including editing material.”
“I was assigned to write the Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam sections of the handbook. This process sharpened my writing skills because I had to tailor my work to the prescribed structure, language and nuances of a government department whilst also conforming to a strict word length.”
“It also required my writing to be of a high quality and standard as the publication was for a large professional audience.”
“I developed numerous skills, the strongest being how to write in a specific manner. It was a totally different type of writing compared to what I’d done at University.”
Mr Weir says his work experience placement has been enormously beneficial.
“I believe it was a strong factor in me gaining full time work straight after University because I had practical experience in this type of writing and researching.”