Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why should I do SHE3FRW?
This Work Integrated Learning subject gives you an opportunity to
- develop your professional networks
- enhance your job opportunity seeking skills,
- improve your workplace readiness,
- and reflect on what it means for you to be a great professional in your chosen field.
Most students comment that after completing this subject their studies make much more sense to them and they feel their understanding of the subject matter increases and they are more motivated to study.
How do I know if I am eligible?
In order to be eligible to take part in this subject you will need to:
- Be enrolled in a course offered by the College of Science, Health and Engineering
- Have a third year elective available in your Study Plan
- Have completed a minimum of 120 credit points of your degree
Do I need permission to enrol in SHE3FRW?
Yes, you must have permission from the Subject Coordinator to enrol in SHE3FRW. The Subject Coordinator will only grant permission to enrol once your placement has been organised (see How to Apply).
I already work part time, can I do my placement there?
We would generally encourage you to seek out alternative options for your SHE3FRW placement as it is important that you have the chance to try out new things and broaden your work experience.
That said, it is possible to undertake a placement at your placement of employment as long as a very clear distinction is drawn between your current paid work and the work undertaken as part of your placement subject. It would not be appropriate to carry out your regular paid work for the purposes of your internship as this may be in breach of the Fair Work legislation (click here for more information about the Fair Work Act).
If you undertake an internship with your current employer, we recommend that
- the work undertaken for your internship takes the form of a project which can be undertaken within the scope of the internship (100-140 hours)
- your project work is supervised by a designated supervisor. Ideally, this person should not be someone that you usually report to while at work.
- your work while on internship must not take the place of a paid employee, in order to comply with the Fair Work Act legislation.
As every student's circumstance can be a little different, please feel free to contact the Subject Coordinator to discuss your particular situation.
Am I supposed to get paid for the work that I do on placement?
Unfortunately, no. Though some organisations offer a small stipend, most work placements are unpaid unless otherwise advertised as students are considered to benefit by gaining knowledge and experience, and by earning credit towards your degree. Work undertaken on placement must not replace a paid staff member, instead it should be undertaken in addition to the daily operations of the business and undertaken within very defined parameters.
That being said, if you enter into a work relationship with an organisation (for example, if you are offered a job at the end of your placement) you should expect to be paid for your work unless you have explicitly agreed to act as a volunteer.
If you have any concerns about the nature of the work that you are undertaking as part of your placement, please speak with your Subject Coordinator as soon as possible so that we can provide you with support. The Fair Work Ombudsman website also contains some helpful information.
How do I get a placement?
Most placements for the subject SHE3FRW are self-sourced. This means that, you will need to identify a company that you would like to work with, and make contact, either via email or phone to request a placement.
We strongly recommend that all students interested in sourcing their own placements attend the "How to get the internship you need" workshop. Check out the "Key Dates" page for workshop details. The Work Integrated Learning team and your Subject Coordinator can also provide some guidance on how to identify a suitable host organisation, and how to make that initial approach.
It will be very important to also make an appointment to see the Career Ready team. They will be able to help you to prepare your CV, write a great Cover Letter, and how to find companies in your area of study.
Important: Students enrolled in La Trobe University's regional campuses are also able to get assistance to find a placement under the Regional Reward. Available placement opportunities are posted to Career Hub. Find out more about the Regional Reward by clicking on this link.
I think I have found a good placement opportunity, but it is quite far from home. Will the University pay for travel or accommodation while I am at placement?
No, any travel or accommodation costs associated with the placement will not generally be covered by the University – they must be paid by you.
That being said, La Trobe University offers students a number of different grants and scholarship opportunities. Students experiencing financial hardship are invited to consider applying for an employability grant, which is designed to support students undertaking placements. You may also be eligible to apply for a student loan. To find out more about what financial assistance is available, click on this link to access the Financial Assistance pages.
To find out more about scholarships, and check if you are eligible, please click here to access the Scholarships section of the La Trobe University website.
Why do I have to do all this paperwork?
The placement approval form and WIL Agreement are there to clarify the basic interests and responsibilities of all parties involved in the placement. For example, without completing this paperwork you would not be covered by the University insurance and your workplace supervisor may be reluctant to take you on.
What kind of support will La Trobe give me while I am on placement?
You will be supported throughout your placement by your Subject Coordinator, and the Work Integrated Learning team.
Prior to applying to participate in this subject, you are encouraged to make an appointment with the Career Ready team. They will be able to help you to formulate your CV, and write a great Cover Letter! They will also be able to give you advice and support on how to go about sourcing a placement. This includes ideas on the types of companies you could contact, what to say when you call, and how best to follow up if you have not received a response to your email / phone call.
Before you begin your placement, there will be an induction session. This session is designed to make sure that you are prepared, and set up for best success. This session covers both the practical aspects of being on placement, as well as providing you with a broader understanding of the academic requirements for this subject.
During your placement, the Subject Coordinator will make contact with your host organisation to check in, and make sure that everything is going as planned. If you have any concerns at any stage before, during, or after your placement, please make sure that you check in with your Subject Coordinator. They will be able to provide you with advice and support. You can also contact the Work Integrated Learning team (SHEWorkIntegratedLearning@latrobe.edu) for advice and support.
After your placement you will be invited to give feedback on your overall experience. This is very helpful for us as we strive for continuous improvement in our program.
When can I do my placement?
SHE3FRW is offered in Semester 2, and again in Summer Semester.
Your placement dates should fall within the semester of enrollment. If, for example, you participated in SHE3FRW in Summer Semester 2018 / 2019, you would will need to complete all of your placement hours between 5 November and 15 February.
The exact timing of your placement, however, is flexible. Some students opt to do their 100-140 hours as a block placement (attending full time), which generally works out at 4 continuous weeks at placement. Others opt to do 1 or 2 days per week spread out over the semester.
Important: Students are not permitted to skip lectures or tutorials in order to attend placements, and we strongly recommend that you ensure that your placement dates can be worked around your academic commitments. It is very important that you do not put yourself at a disadvantage academically by attending your placement.