The TEN4TEN Leadership Dialogue students from Orange, Canowindra and Molong have attended an afternoon tea at Orange City Council.
The inaugural program connects 10 students with 10 community leaders to gain career insights and mentorship.
The students met with council executives to hear their personal career stories and be given an overview of the workings of council.
Orange Mayor Reg Kidd said it was a fantastic afternoon for both staff and students.
"I believe the students learnt a lot about the range of positions council offers from engineering, environmental science, media and the arts," he said.
"It is important for us to talk to school students about different career pathways because as a local government we are a big employer.
"I'm positive the students have a better understanding now of what council does and the potential careers they can choose."
As one of the mentors in the program, Cr Kidd also said he keeps in regular contact with the teenager he is mentoring Molong Central School student Joe Spencer.
Cr Kidd said he would like to see the TEN4TEN Leadership Dialogue program continue in the future.
"I think this program by the Regional Development Australia Central West is a great model and should be rolled out across the state," he said.
Joe said his favourite part of the afternoon tea was being able to talk to members of council about how they reached their position.
"I learnt no matter what career you end up in you should always look to move forward and gain experience and qualifications whenever the opportunity arises."
He also said it was great to see the other students participating in the program and said he keeps in regular contact with mayor Kidd.
"It is great to be able to talk to a great bunch of kids about how they're going with school and general life," Joe said.
"Reg also checks in on how I'm going at school and we are building a great relationship.
"He has given me advice on career routes and opportunities that I should look for when starting the job hunt."