Finding a job and building your career can be challenging for anyone, and for people who face barriers to employment, this path can at times be trickier to navigate. Before joining Mylestones and the University Specialist Employment Partnership (USEP) program, Angie, who found it hard to compete in the job market, continued to build her skill set through study.  

Armed with a Bachelor of Commerce, plus a major in accounting, Angie set her sights on becoming a Certificated Public Accountant (CPA). However, with limited practical experience compared to other potential job applicants, Angie instead continued to focus on her studies through pursuing a Masters in Accounting. 

The appeal for Angie in choosing to join a program such as USEP, was that it provided her with tailored support to secure employment relating to her area of interest as opposed to a general industry role. Mylestones is supported by the USEP program, which is delivered in partnerships with Griffith University, and University of the Sunshine Coast to offer disability employment support to students seeking employment within their chosen field. Through Griffith University, Angie connected with Mylestones via the USEP program, with the objective to secure employment in her field of expertise. 

Searching for jobs has always been a daunting experience for Angie, as she had never had training on how to search for the right job. Through Griffith University, Angie connected with Natalie, the Mylestones Regional Manager and USEP consultant, for support securing employment. Natalie worked with Angie to get her job ready through application preparedness by guiding her on understanding how to answer specific questions, identify employment initiatives and programs that were suited to her skill set, and work to overcome barriers of limited employment and work experience through programs offering workplace support and engaging in internships to gain more practical experience. Natalie was available to provide transport to and from interviews and in collaboration with Angie, provide any additional support as required.  

“While working with Natalie in the USEP program I was able to focus on job search efforts and opportunities that were suited to my qualifications and look for employers that could support my skills at the entry level,” said Angie.  

To continue supporting Angie’s pathway to employment, Natalie arranged a work experience opportunity within a Finance Team as part of a Brisbane Government Department. Angie aimed to increase her confidence, socialisation skills and productivity within the workforce whilst gaining firsthand practical experience to help build her capacity.  

A woman standing in front of a building smiling at the camera


Natalie came across an opportunity for participation in Brisbane City Council’s DisABILITY ACTION at WORK (DAAW) program, which is a four-month internship for people experiencing barriers to create potential pathways for future employment within Brisbane City Council. The program matches participants into work placements in a supporting and engaging environment and gives participants the skills and confidence to expand into further employment or study following their paid placement. While previous internships had exposed Angie to different workplaces, the DAAW program was beneficial to helping her understand how Council worked, how it is structured, the recruitment process, and other hints and tips along the way.   

“Finding employment in the DAAW program helped me build the confidence I needed to settle in a team and demonstrate skills in a professional environment,” Angie said.  

Since commencing the USEP program, Angie has been on a journey of immense personal growth. Through the support Mylestones and the USEP program have provided Angie to get her job ready, it has built her confidence in the workplace which reduced her anxiety and allowed her more time to focus on the things she loves, such as family time, animals and drawing. With Mylestones’ intensive personal and communication support, Angie managed to develop the communication skill set required in the workplace to enable her to communication more freely. One skill training activity involved interactive Question & Answer sessions that worked to build on Angie’s communication skills, and ability to think and effectively converse on those topics. Angie and Natalie would each take on the role of asking or answering questions, with feedback provided at the end of the session regarding effective communication and learnings from the activity.   

Throughout the placement in the DAAW program, Angie continued to rely on Mylestones to support her career pathways as she felt valued and cared for, and she appreciated the level of understanding in how best to support her. As the DAAW program neared completion, a goal for Angie was to remain employed by Brisbane City Council (BCC). Natalie, in collaboration with Angie and her BCC supervisor submitted a request for Angie’s contract to be extended. Natalie threw her support behind this by mapping out 6 -12 monthly goals for employment opportunities for Angie within BCC. Angie’s supervisor supported this extension request through providing evidence of support, which resulted in Angie transitioning into 6 monthly ongoing full-time contracts.  

Angie’s next goal to achieve was to secure long-term employment, so with the support of her supervisor, a plan was discussed to apply for a permanent position within the team. To continue Angie’s capacity building to ensure there was no performance shortfalls as part of the permanent role available, the group worked together to minimise any performance gaps through upskilling and development.  

With her determination and the support of Mylestones, in January 2023 Angie was successful in applying for a permanent full-time role with BCC in the Community Facilities division. The role involves supporting a small team with preparing reports, data entry and maintaining accounts, for which Angie draws upon her specialised skill set in finance. With Mylestones’ support, Angie has been able to embark on this learning pathway which allows her to contribute to her work in new and exciting ways, using skills she already has and developing new ones, including assisting in a change of software at BCC – an accomplishment that has filled her with pride. 

“I’m doing something and contributing. It feels like all the study and interviews have led somewhere,” said Angie.  

Securing full-time work filled Angie with relief and made her feel excited and successful, and it has given her the opportunity to prove she can do the work. Finding a job and being paid has provided Angie the opportunity to do more of the things she loves as she’s now financially independent – and it is better than she could have imagined.   

“Before I could only imagine what jobs I could get and what opportunities I would get but now that I’m working, I can think more realistically and actually be able to try to achieve my goals,” Angie said.  

Mylestones and USEP are here to support people like Angie to pursue opportunities to expand their skills and knowledge, earn and income and gain financial independence. Through the support of these programs Angie has achieved that and is well on her way to achieving more of her goals.