The Challenger TAFE/Rotary Club of Rockingham 2008 Aboriginal Student of the Year, Kristina Radcliffe, aims to devote her career to improving the quality of life for young Aboriginals at risk.
Kristina is employed by the Department of Corrective Services (DCS) as an Aboriginal Support Officer, and hopes to further her career with the Department.
“I want to make a difference in my community as a Juvenile Justice Officer, and the combined training I received at Challenger TAFE has given me the perfect start to my career,” she said.
Kristina completed a Certificate II in Business at the Fremantle Campus and is currently completing a Certificate III in Business Administration while working full-time.
She also successfully gained entry to the Leadership Pre-Employment Program with the College. The PEP is a specialised course that ran in conjunction with DCS to increase indigenous employment within that department.
The College’s Program Manager in Business, Rowena Maling, praised Kristina as a highly enthusiastic student with very definite career goals.
“Kristina’s degree of motivation was inspiring. She completed her qualification in the minimum 6 month period whereas many students typically take up to a year,” she said.
“She also has a clear-cut sense of what she wants from her career, which has undoubtedly added to her drive. These qualities have impressed all who have come in to contact with her.”
Kristina said her lecturers inspired her to strive for excellence, and the training environment featured a ‘virtual enterprise’ that provided practical, interactive experience in a variety of job roles.
“Everything I learnt in the virtual enterprise was relevant to my position at DCS, it was a fantastic way to learn because it showed us how things work in the ‘real world’, and we were able to perform many of the different functions within an organisation,” she said.
“The support from the lecturers was absolutely inspiring. They were so interested in our progress and completely committed to helping us achieve as much as we could.”
Kristina also praised the Pre-Employment Program for building a wider skills base that she can draw on as her career progresses.
“The PEP really built on the skills I learnt as a business trainee, particularly in terms of communication, leadership and organisational skills,” she said.
Challenger TAFE Managing Director, Liz Harris, said Kristina was a deserving winner of the $1000 cash prize, and her commitment and motivation were a credit to herself and the College.
“Kristina has distinguished herself as an outstanding student, which is a reflection of her own high standards as well as those of the College,” she said.
“Her strong community spirit and passion for helping those less fortunate than her will see her become a role model for not only indigenous people, but the wider community as well.”