Aboriginal education program grows in popularity

Monday, 18 November 2013

An inaugural education course launched this year by Challenger Institute of Technology is already delivering great results.

A total of thirty-three students will graduate this year with a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (TAE) qualification, which is specifically designed for Aboriginal participants who want to move into related roles in industry or training institutions.

Challenger Institute Aboriginal Training and Workforce Development Officer Lee-Anne Habel said the program had been successful because of the interactive, community-minded and supportive nature of course delivery.

"I am overwhelmed by the success of this pilot program, and the feedback that I have received from both participants and industry has been amazing," Ms Habel said.

"It's particularly pleasing that a number of graduates who are currently employed see this qualification as enabling them to expand their career options.

"The course has run five times this year, each class having more participants than the last, proving that word-of-mouth and positive community and industry awareness of the program is alive and well. There is already a waiting list for next year's course."

The course covers ten units of competency and is delivered one week per month over a three-month period. The support of an Indigenous Tutorial Assistance Scheme (ITAS) mentor in class ensures participants are keeping up and committed to completing their work.

Challenger Institute Aboriginal Leadership lecturer and course facilitator Debbie Guy said there had been many student success stories as a result of the program.

"The course participants have been very diverse, including a mix of males and females and ages ranging from 22 years up to students in their early 60's," Ms Guy said.

"For most participants the course has been about recognising that they may not have been in the right career, with the program opening their eyes to the possibility of finding more meaningful employment or training opportunities.

"It has been fantastic to see the improvement in the students' confidence, ambition and determination. This to me has been the most rewarding part of teaching the course."

One student who has thrived since completing the course is 44-year-old mother of nine Daniella Borg of Middle Swan.

Daniella works as an Aboriginal Education Officer at Governor Stirling Senior High School. She said completing the course had been a confidence-boosting experience.

"I always strive to set a good example to my children that you can achieve anything if you put your mind to it," Daniella said.

"It was so great to get this qualification, as although I knew I had the capabilities to do my job well, I didn't possess the specific techniques to excel in my role. This course has taught me these skills."

Daniella completed the course in September. She has many future ambitions with one including the option to eventually become a trainer.

"Completing this qualification has given me the skills to be able to teach and mentor others in a similar position to what I am in, which will be very rewarding."

The course is being run at the Challenger Institute Murdoch campus next year. A total of six courses will be run due to the success of the 2013 program and student demand.


PHOTO CAPTION: Daniella Borg (Middle Swan) pictured with Certificate IV in Training and Assessment graduates in the background.

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