School Leaver Program

Finishing Year 12 and looking to get a head start on your career?

The 2024 Australian Government School Leaver Program is a 12-month career development program. It’s a full-time job with a competitive salary, paid holidays and superannuation.

You’ll build your skills on the job at one of the many Australian Government departments and agencies participating in the 2024 program. And if you find you love the meaningful work, you can stay on and continue your career in the Australian Public Service (APS).

The program builds on the success of the Department of Finance’s Career Starter Program and the APS HR Profession’s Human Resources (HR) School Leaver Program that you may have heard about in previous years.

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What’s the program?

  • If you’re successful, you’ll have a permanent, full-time job at the APS1 level in one of the government departments and agencies listed below.
  • While you’re working, you’ll study for a Certificate IV in Government or Human Resources.
  • You’ll be part of a supportive team, with a dedicated supervisor and ‘buddies’ from previous years’ participants.
  • There’ll be regular networking events with other school leavers.
  • And after the 12-month program, you’ll have the opportunity to advance to the APS2 level.

Who’s eligible?

You will need to:

  • have completed a Year 12 certificate (or equivalent) in 2022 or be completing one in 2023
  • be an Australian citizen (or be granted Australian citizenship before November 2023)
  • undergo security and police checks.

Click the portraits to read previous School Leaver's thoughts on the program

One application, multiple opportunities

With one application you can apply for a job in human resources, a generalist role or both. There are also specific application pathways for Indigenous applicants and those living with disability.

You’ll let us know what type of work you’re interested in, the department or agency where you’d like to work, and in which location – although most positions are based in Canberra.

There are a number of stages in the selection process, including a written application, a video interview and participation in a group assessment.

For more information, and attend one of the online information sessions held on Microsoft Teams. You can join each session here.

Date and Time (AEST) Notes
Thursday 27 July 4pm  
Wednesday 2 August 4pm  
Tuesday 8 August 4pm This session is being held for applicants with disability
Wednesday 9 August 4pm  
Tuesday 15 August 4pm This session is being held for Indigenous applicants
Wednesday 16 August 4pm  
Wednesday 23 August 4pm  
Thursday 24 August 4pm  

Click here to find out more about how rewarding it is to be working in the APS.

More questions?

Contact the School Leaver Program:

Phone: 02 6215 1717

the APS career pathways logo

How to Apply

Applications are now open and close on 30 August 2023.

Apply for the Australian Government School Leaver program.

To apply, you’ll need answer questions about why you’re interested in the program and upload your resume.

We want to know about you school experience and extra-curricular activities such as part-time or casual work, involvement in clubs, sport and any other achievements you’d like to share.

Participating agencies

  • Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency
  • Australian Bureau of Statistics
  • Australian Communications and Media Authority
  • Australian Electoral Commission
  • Australian Signals Directorate
  • Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade)
  • Australian Taxation Office
  • Bureau of Meteorology
  • Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
  • Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water
  • Department of Defence
  • Department of Education
  • Department of Employment and Workplace Relations
  • Department of Finance
  • Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Department of Health and Aged Care
  • Department of Home Affairs
  • Department of Industry, Science and Resources
  • Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts
  • Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Department of Social Services
  • Department of Treasury
  • Department of Veterans' Affairs
  • Inspector-General of Taxation
  • Murray Darling Basin Authority
  • National Capital Authority
  • Office of National Intelligence
  • Safe Work Australia

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