Download our guides Your Next Career Accommodation Money and banking Cost of living Visas Employment Health and safety Language Life in Australia Studying Getting around Travel Advertise

A Guide to Launching Your Career in Geelong

This article is sponsored by The Gordon Institute of TAFE

Boasting a picturesque waterfront, stunning natural wonders and relaxed coastal vibes, Geelong is situated an hour outside of Melbourne and is Victoria’s second-largest city. Its laidback lifestyle, more affordable cost of living and growing career opportunities have made it an attractive place to live and work.

Geelong resident and former international student, Bo Li, agrees with all of the above. Originally from China, Bo has built a great life and career for himself since graduating with a Certificate III and IV in Commercial Cookery from The Gordon, a TAFE institute in Geelong. His passion for cooking and hospitality, along with his formal studies, has allowed him to open and run his own ramen restaurant, Sober Ramen, across Geelong and Torquay.

In this guide, we explore why you should consider Geelong when launching your career, and all the important things you need to know about moving to this fantastic regional city.

Why work in Geelong?

“Geelong is a really beautiful city,” says Bo. “If you gave me another chance to choose where I’d start my career, I’d choose Geelong again.”

Its friendly community, beautiful beaches, world-class education options and affordable cost of living have attracted many like Bo to pursue a life in Geelong.

But the city has also become a great option for those looking to start and grow their careers. Some of Geelong’s most popular industries include healthcare, construction, hospitality, advanced manufacturing, information technology and retail trade. This makes it a particularly good city for anyone looking for a career in these fields. 

Visa options

Victoria provides state-nominated visas for qualified graduates or professionals in any occupation on the Department of Home Affairs skilled occupation list

If you fall into one of the designated occupation categories, you may be eligible to apply for a Skilled Nominated (subclass 190) visa or a Skilled Regional (Provisional) (subclass 491) visa, because Geelong is considered a regional destination for migration purposes.

 Learn more about Victoria’s skilled migration program here.

Prepare for the Geelong job market

If you’re interested in kickstarting your career in Geelong, here are our top tips:

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

Many educational institutions provide resources for both current and former students. At The Gordon, for example, the Skills and Job Centre has qualified advisors who assist with career planning, course information, apprenticeship advice and job search strategies, as well as resume writing and even how to prepare for a job interview. 

After completing his studies at The Gordon, Bo received waves of support from the local community and his former teachers, which allowed him to open up two locations for his restaurant, Sober Ramen. Bo has since remained in contact with his former teacher who has provided professional advice on everything ​​from menu design and staff training to general and career support.

Build a strong professional network

While preparing for the job market, embrace networking and social events as opportunities to grow your professional network.

Explore your educational institution’s clubs and societies and use them as a way to meet new people and build connections with students who share common interests or are studying similar degrees. 

You can also keep an eye out for Geelong networking events hosted through Eventbrite, including the Artists and Creatives Networking Event 2023 in late February or a networking breakfast in March.

Explore work placements and volunteering

Hands-on experiences like internships and volunteering can also help launch your career. 

As a full-time cookery student, Bo benefited from The Gordon’s excellent facilities including access to a commercial kitchen, teachers and industry professionals. He also appreciated the practical, hands-on approach to learning through in-school placements and work experience.

Find your dream job

When you’re ready to launch your career in Geelong, explore job search resources such as SEEK and LinkedIn, as well as career hubs and job boards through your education provider. 

The City of Greater Geelong’s Jobs Victoria Advocates is also a useful resource, which provides practical support tailored to your needs. 

So, what are you waiting for? Your new career in Geelong awaits.