This Scarf graduate Q & A is part of our new 'Stay Home with Scarf' campaign. Find out more here

..

.

Which Scarf program did you take part in?

Winter Scarf '18 at Bhang.

Which country were you born in?

Uganda.

How did you hear about Scarf?

Through the Centre for Multicultural Youth

.

Why did you apply for the Scarf program?

I needed exposure to the industry.

What was your experience of job-hunting and applying for jobs before you came to Scarf?

It was sad and hurting being rejected or not receiving a call but inside I felt I had something to give or a skill to add to the team but I wasn’t given a chance.

.

The Winter Scarf '18 trainees at Bhang. L to R - Mahsa, Emma, Mirna, Emilio, Afraa, Abuk and Wesley. Photo: Linsey Rendell

.

Was the Scarf program what you were expecting?

I was surprised that I could bring out the inner me and actually have good conversations with customers. I was very, very shy.

What was the most valuable thing you got from participating in Scarf?

Teamwork.

I was surprised that I could bring out the inner me and actually have good conversations with customers. I was very, very shy. 

.

Service training during the Winter Scarf '18 program at Bhang with mentors Gabs and Sharan. Photo: Linsey Rendell

.

Do you think working with a mentor is a positive thing? If so, why?

It is a positive thing because a mentor identifies your weaknesses and works towards helping you turn them into strengths.

Did the Scarf program help to increase your confidence? If so, why?

It did increase my confidence as now I don’t have many difficulties in communicating and even heading team meetings at work.

.

Wine training during the Winter Scarf '18 program at Bhang with Jenny 'Wine Whitch' Polack. Photo: Linsey Rendell

.

Tell us about the first job you got after you finished Scarf. 

Within a month of graduating from Scarf I got a full time job at National Australia Bank, as a static data analyst. It’s a job different from what I studied for at University so it was nice getting a new challenge. I've been working at NAB for two years now. 

Hospitality opens up many gates that are closed. Now I don’t have many difficulties in communicating and even heading team meetings at work.

.

Coffee training during the Winter Scarf '18 program at Vertue Coffee in Carlton. Photo: Linsey Rendell

.

Would you like to become a mentor or trainer at Scarf in the future? 

Yes because it’s nice to share experience and giving back to the society that once gave me an opportunity.

Do you have any words of advice for other young people who are interested in participating in Scarf?

Just give it a try, you never know what opportunities lie ahead. You can’t regret later after giving something a chance. Hospitality opens many gates that are closed.

.

The Winter Scarf '18 trainees having a bit of fun outside Bhang. Photo: Linsey Rendell
.

NB: The above Q+A was conducted via email in June 2020.
Portrait photo: Linsey Rendell