Immersive Internships at TrinityJohn Blois
Mr Luke Philpotts has been a familiar face on the Trinity campus for a number of years after beginning as an Academic Mentor in the StudyPlus Co-curricular programme when he was just 18 years old.
He has maintained this role as well as taking on the position of Teacher’s Aide in the TESS (Trinity Education Support Services) Department. Now, he’s adding ‘Intern’ as the newest string to his bow while he studies at Macquarie University.
“I’ve been immersed in the Trinity ecosystem,” he says. “The Internship is one thing, which I can do one day a week and fulfil my practical placement obligations, but I’ve also been able to maintain my role in TESS in the meantime and maintain my role in StudyPlus as an academic Mentor after School as well. So it’s been a really great experience to do it in a place where I’m comfortable, I know the boys, I’ve established a rapport with them, and everyone’s welcoming.”
While it seems like a lot to have on his plate, and many of his peers wonder how he pulls 12-hour days Monday–Wednesday, Mr Philpotts wouldn’t have it any other way. He says that each of his roles has allowed him to explore new capabilities and build on his knowledge.
“Coming from the TESS Department and Learning Support, it’s enabled me to understand the complex learner and what that looks like in the mainstream classroom,” he reflects.
“Doing your prac or an internship at Trinity is not like doing it at any other school. It’s not like one of those things where you go and you get your hours signed off and that’s it, you move on. It’s a really immersive experience; the collegiality is something that I have identified as unique to Trinity.
“Trinity is one of those places that never sleeps. So, if you go in with the mindset that this is an opportunity, you’ll be rewarded, in terms of the experiences that are available to you.”
Mr Philpotts is seeing some of those rewards himself, as he takes on a new leadership role in the StudyPlus programme, as a Lead Academic Mentor.
“I’ve never taken a leadership position before, even an informal one, so this one really did challenge me to step out of my comfort zone,” he says. “I’ve always been the one to do things, rather than lead or show others how to do things, so it was a really great opportunity to pass on the three years of experience I’ve had in the StudyPlus programme to the new mentors.
“Going into teaching, even if you’re not a leader by label or by title, you do need to show leadership to your students, so these opportunities have set me up in good stead for whatever is to come.”
Whether joining as an Intern, or just taking on a new role at Trinity, Mr Philpotts has some advice for anyone coming onboard at Trinity which has seen him well in his journey so far.
“Know that this is a place where you will grow,” he says. “Whilst Trinity aims to grow good men, it simultaneously allows them to grow good teachers too.”
“Say yes to the opportunities afforded to you. Come in with a growth mindset and really understand what that means – challenging yourself, stepping out of your comfort zone – because if you do that, that’s where the growth as an individual will happen for you.”
Want to know more about working at Trinity? Check out all the employment opportunities available.