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Land Skills Study Helps Earth Wayward School Leaver

August 13, 2012

Carissa cuddles Fox one of her Napier Family's three cats.

Former “wild child”, Carissa Looij credits EIT with helping her grow and find a career direction.

Unquestionably bright, Carissa found school “all too regimented”. Before allowing her to quit at the end of 2010, however, her parents insisted she complete her Level 1 NCEA.

Concerned about where she might head her life, her father, Chris Looij – on the advisory committee for EIT’s School of Applied Science – suggested she consider the Certificate in Applied Practical Skills – Land Skills.

Carissa agreed the 17-week course looked “cool” and enrolled to learn about agriculture, horticulture, animal care, tree care and forestry.

“It was hands-on and 90 percent practical learning and outdoors stuff and I definitely tried out a lot of things,” she says. “The thing is that it is a good transition from high school to adult learning.”

Aiming now for a career in social work or counselling, Carissa is now studying for EIT’s Certificate in Introduction to Social Science as a stepping stone towards gaining the Bachelor of Applied Social
Sciences degree.

“So many young people don’t know what to do when they leave school,” she says, “and yet they keep being asked: “What’s your life plan?” I think EIT helped me grow up quite a lot.”