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PUBLISHED FEBRUARY 2020

Work experience gives scholar direction

When Joel Hall was in high school, he didn’t immediately know what career was right for him. But through paid work experience with his scholarship partner Fonterra, he discovered what he wanted to focus on.
When Joel Hall was in high school, he didn’t immediately know what career was right for him. But through paid work experience with his scholarship partner Fonterra, he discovered what he wanted to focus on.
“At the age of 17 I walked in the door – I had only just finished high school. So what that did was allow me a huge amount of visibility over different teams across four years, and it really reinforced my interest in HR and business.”

Having meaningful conversations with his mentor throughout the programme was also invaluable, says Joel, who studied management studies (with honours) at Waikato University.

“It allowed me to expand my horizons and do things out of my comfort zone.”

“The first time we met, we took a personality test and the result was we were total personality opposites. Although this result initially worried me, this fact has made my journey even better because I was constantly challenged, and it inspired deeper thinking and shared differing perspectives.”

Joel is deeply grateful for the opportunities provided by his scholarship experience.

“I was lucky enough to be partnered with Fonterra, who like all the partnering organisations went above and beyond.

“When you provide a First Foundation scholarship, not only do you give a job, but you give a vote of confidence in rangitahi and those additional opportunities that come from the skills you teach.”

Having completed the First Foundation programme, Joel has some wisdom to offer current and future scholars.

“After these wonderful four years, the critical lesson is although you work hard and take all the opportunities you can, enjoy the journey as you’re going to work the rest of your life – unless you win Lotto. Therefore, make every day count like it’s your last and enjoy that.”

2017 Fonterra Scholar Joel Hall addresses at our 2020 scholars.
Don’t miss this video of Joel talking more about his experience with First Foundation.