Sydney Access

Sydney Harbour Marriott Hotel

Cerdon College student Emma Burton, snapped up the chance for a hospitality placement with the Sydney Harbour Marriot, one of the employers on our Sydney Access program. ‘I absolutely loved it’ said Emma, about her 5 day placement at one of the top hotels in the heart of the City’s CBD.

One placement, many opportunities

The Sydney Access strap line, One placement, many opportunities, really came true for Emma who is studying hospitality as part of her HSC. As a result of Emma’s potential shown on the placement, Emma has been offered part time work immediately, and support when she links with her apprenticeship at TAFE in the future. The opportunity really moved Emma on with her thinking. She has experienced other placements but she says ‘I feel like I’ve been on the edge and now I’m really in the door. This has put things into perspective.’

Experiencing new skills

Emma had the opportunity to work in many areas of the hotel before her time in the kitchen. She was amazed at the hotel enterprise as a whole, and ‘how much there is to it’. Emma ended the week working with Executive Chef Andre and his highly experienced team, where she got to cook some incredible dishes, made cookies and prepared high end food for banquets run for business people at the hotel. ‘This has further developed my passion and skills for being a chef. It was in my head and I kind of knew, but this has really cemented it for me.’

Switched on

The Sydney Harbour Marriott provided the opportunity but Emma had to grab it with both hands and she certainly did. Kersten, chef at the hotel and Emma’s mentor, was impressed with Emma from the outset. ‘Emma was switched on from the start. She is self motivated, knows her future, and was comfortable in the kitchen.’ The result of Emma’s enthusiasm and the way she was able to apply and develop her skills, has led to an offer of part-time work in the Marriott kitchen. Both Emma and her family are extremely pleased with the offer. It is all part of making a positive impression. ‘Emma is reliable and showed initiative’ says Kersten, ‘she listened well, was quick to learn and fitted in really well with the team.’ These are vital qualities in any workplace.

Ask the right questions

Kersten and his team members, who also mentored Emma on a daily basis, said that Emma was easy to work with. ‘Emma asked the right questions’ said Christine a chef’s assistant, ‘she is quick to learn and also paid attention to detail which is vital when working at this level.’ Kersten was keen to add that Emma demonstrated her passion and love of cooking and showed him in a short time that she did not require much supervision. ‘It was a credit to Emma that she did not require too much supervision and could be given a task to get on with and be trusted to do it.’

Proud to be a Sydney Access employer

‘It is fantastic to be able to give students the opportunity to really see how it all works,’ comments, Michael Perrott, Director of Food and Beverage. Emma has been super. I am proud to be part of any program where we can work with students who are passionate and want to work in the industry.’

Human Resources Sydney Harbour Marriott Comments

We are delighted that Sydney Access contacted us to be part of their work placement program. When we were told that the students that would be coming to our hotel would be the top of their class, we did not expect to be overwhelmed by the talent that Emma showed. The program is a great new way to discover talent for the company. We were able to offer Emma a part time role and secure another quality cook into our hotel. Sydney Access offers great opportunities for students, as it did for Emma, and allows them to see what a great place the Marriott is to work. We are looking forward to meeting many new talented students in the future.