Students, you can tune out while your parents take over for this bit …

Achieving NCEA Level 2 allows young people the option to take on further education or get a good foothold in the workforce. This is where the Vocational Pathways can help, by offering access to a wider range of learning opportunities to achieve qualifications at levels 1–3 on the National Qualifications Framework, with a focus on achieving NCEA
level 2.

There are a range of Youth Guarantee Networks around the country that consist of education providers, employers and community interests. Using the Vocational Pathways, the networks are developing learning opportunities across the networks to ensure students have:

  • more relevant learning contexts
  • more choice about what and where to learn
  • more applied learning opportunities
  • more relevant learning programmes.

A range of Youth Guarantee initiatives such as secondary-tertiary programmes (including trades academies), service academies, and fees-free places provide students with new opportunities to engage in higher education and vocational training for free.

What are the vocational pathways?

Ok, anyone under 20 can dive back in … the Vocational Pathways are a way of looking at career options and support available for jobs. These are clumped in six broad sectors (the sixth, creative is still under consideration by the Ministry of Education, but we’ve included it in here because we like poets, dancers, and other artistic types),

The pathways represent new ways to structure and achieve NCEA level 2 and provide a more understandable framework for vocational education and training. They aim to help you develop your own individual education plan, so you can be better informed and can make better choices to meet your career goals.

The Vocational Pathways (including the possible sixth pathway) are:

  • Primary Industries
  • Services Industries
  • Social and Community Services
  • Manufacturing and Technology
  • Construction and Infrastructure
  • Creative Industries

Here in JETmag, we have our sector overviews arranged under these six headings. Each overview has several profiles of young professionals and professionals-in-training doing awesome things. Their jobs range from the straightforward (like a doctor or teacher) through to funky specialist fields (like a fashion designer or audio engineer).


Vocational profile

Everyone in senior school should have received their vocational profile (on If you didn’t, ask your careers advisor or year dean.

Your vocational profile shows your achievement against the five current Vocational Pathways. This should give you a sense of the progress you are making to achieve NCEA Level 2 or equivalent.

Achieving a Vocational Pathway on your profile means you are developing the skills and knowledge in areas that employers value. Employers will be able to see your strengths, abilities, interests and achievements using the Vocational Pathways.

Your Vocational Profile can show how your achievement relates to the learning or skills training employers are seeking.

If you’re an especially creative type, you’ll have to wait until that pathway is developed before you can measure your progress in related NCEA subjects.


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