There are a whole range of different paths to work in advertising, media and PR. While these can be difficult industries to break into, there are a few different VET courses that can provide practical training to get your foot in the door for a rewarding and creative career.

What is VET?

VET stands for Vocational Education and Training, which is an education pathway that’s focused on gaining practical skills and providing you with a nationally-recognised qualification, ranging from a Certificate I to Certificate IV, to a Diploma, Advanced Diploma, Graduate Diploma and Graduate Certificate.

A VET course is similar to a university degree in that you spend a chunk of your time getting qualified for a real-world career, but it’s generally shorter, less theoretical and more hands-on, and more work-focused. You can complete a VET course at TAFE or another registered training organisation (RTO). Statistically, those who complete a VET course, have higher rates of employment and, on average, get paid slightly better than university graduates.

Why is VET relevant to the industry?

VET courses offer a whole bunch of very specific training for those with niche career aspirations, whether it’s journalism, film-making, radio, tv, production, human resource management or advertising. It’s often understood that in order to work in advertising, media or PR, you need to possess a bachelor’s degree or higher, but that’s not necessarily the case.

This is where VET comes in: VET courses provide the opportunity to do shorter and more specific courses than your average bachelor’s degree. VET courses can take between a couple of weeks to four years for an apprenticeship, then afterward you can undertake an internship or learn the rest on the job. In considering VET, you’ll want to ask yourself how long it will take, how much it will cost, how practical it is and the employment outcomes afterwards.

What are some courses that I can do?

One of the most appealing parts of VET is that the courses are generally shorter, cheaper and more practically focused than a bachelor’s degree. For those who’ve already started working in the industry, VET courses can also be a path to up skilling and many people turn to a VET course before or after they’ve completed a university degree in order to enhance their skills and gain more practical experience. Here are a few examples of training courses, from entry level to advanced:

  • Certificate II in Creative Industries (Media) (Entry Level)

This course is essentially an introduction to the creative industries, with a focus on production assistance in community radio and television. It’s a 6-month, preparatory program that’s designed to lead into a Certificate III in Media. Students are equipped with technical knowledge of cameras, recording equipment and editing software and they graduate with the qualifications to assist in stage, screen and radio production.

See stats and outcomes.

  • Certificate IV in Marketing and Communication (Trade Level)

This course is designed to qualify graduates to work in the wide variety of roles that encompass marketing and communication. It’s a 7-month program that could lead to in anything from advertising to admin to HR. Over 86% of those who complete the course are satisfied with it and 61% receive job related benefits from training. 

See stats and outcomes.

  • Advanced Diploma of Live Production and Management Services (Advanced Level)

This course is for those who already have some knowledge and experience in the entertainment industry. It’s a year-long program with a focus on technical operations production for all things related to stage performance, including music, theatre, lighting and sound.

See stats and outcomes.

What are the career outcomes?

There’s a whole range of career outcomes in these industries, including, journalism, copywriting, public relations, video production, video editing, camera operation, photography, digital marketing, event planning, event management, web design and graphic design.

For more info on courses and career paths, check out the My Skills website.

If you want some more info on someone who knows what it’s actually like to study Marketing through VET, head here and check out Hanna’s story– she studied a Diploma of Marketing and is now killin’ it in the marketing world so she definitely knows what she’s talking about.