Rangitikei College students aren't waiting until they leave school to step into the real world.
A pilot programme called Aspire is placing keen students from the Marton high school in real life work situation now.
Aspire is led by deputy principal Jeff King with ten students involved in this year's trial.
The programme began in term two and the group spend every third Friday in Wellington shadowing a mentor in their field of interest.
The students who have an identified area of interest are matched to work places they don't have access to in the region and show aspect of the job they cannot learn at school.
"We look for those who have a passion for something, who are often our school's leaders and communicators, and then work with them to help explore how that passion can turn into a career," Mr King said.
One of the first students in the programme's first year is Gillian Bowler. The year 13 student is interested in film and broadcasting so has spent time at NZME in Wellington with sound engineer James Irwin.
She will also get the chance to experience aspects of film and print media.
"I just soaked it all up," Gillian said. "It's quite surreal. Here's little old me from Marton down there in Wellington doing something I wouldn't normally get a shot at doing."
Mr King said Aspire aimed to show students that where they came from had no outcome on where they end up.
"Aspire helps them see themselves in another setting and discover that there's a whole lot more out there that we teachers don't know about," he said.
"It just makes so much sense. The skills that they gain from these things are just phenomenal."
The school hoped, if successful, Aspire would be able to be used in other schools.