The second week in June will see the launch of GOTAFE’s inaugural ‘Women’s Health Awareness Week’. The week will feature a series of activities including a Yoga Class facilitated by Aquamoves, a bake sale prepared by GOTAFE Hospitality and Baking students, a lunchtime walking group, Health Seminar presented by GV Health and prizes donated by GOTAFE’s Hairdressing & Beauty Salon.
- 13 Tuesday June: Aquamoves Yoga Class 1-2pm
- 14 Wednesday June: GOBake Sale 1-3pm
- 15 Thursday June: Walking Group 1-2:30pm
- 16 Friday June: GV Health Seminar & Raffle Draw 10:30am to 12:30pm
The week was initiated by GOTAFE Hospitality Teacher, Anita McFarlane, who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. Ms McFarlane kick-started the idea in May by chopping off her hair alongside her sister Valerie Low and niece Yolanda Low. Their hair was donated to the Variety Charity to make wigs for sick children.
Ms McFarlane would like to use her experience with breast cancer as a way of encouraging women to prioritise their health.
“As women we are often so busy caring for the needs of our family and friends that we often overlook our own health. Unfortunately, because I did this, I now find myself in a challenging situation,” said Ms McFarlane.
“Being aware of Women’s Health issues is important for everyone in the community. Partners, children, friends and family members should remind the women in their lives to have regular health checks.
“If it wasn’t for my husband nagging me to get a check-up, things could have been a lot worse. So I have that to be thankful for.” Ms McFarlane has set up a donation page, with all proceeds going to the Goulburn Valley Breast Cancer Special Purpose Fund, operated by GV Health, Shepparton.
GOTAFE’s Women’s Health Awareness Week is open to the public. For updates please visit the GOTAFE Facebook page.
At 22, Jack Armstrong has discovered his forever career path, Nursing.
Jack is a Stanhope native, and a current enrolled student in the Diploma of Nursing (HTL54115) at GOTAFE’s Fryers Street Campus in Shepparton. He also works part time as a Health Assistant in Nursing (HAN) at Goulburn Valley Health, also in Shepparton.
Jack went to Rushworth P-12 College, and studied Physics, chemistry, fast tracked biology, english, maths and business management. The sciences were his forte and during year 12 fell into the trap of thinking he had to go to University as his next step.
Jack then enrolled at Ballarat University (now Federation University) in 2013 to study Metallurgy, and got three quarters of the way through first year before realising that this wasn’t the right career path and decided to look for full time employment.
Jack joined his local community groups the Mens Shed and Stanhope Business Centre before finding employment with the Rushworth Aged Care Hostel in 2015. He then moved on to the Tatura GV Health Hospital and Aged Care, and that eventually evolved into a new position looking after the residents group activities. It was then that Jack was then made aware of the GOTAFE traineeship course in Health Services Assistance, which involved six months studying and working part time which he applied for and commenced almost immediately.
After his traineeship concluded earlier this year, Jack decided to take his skills further and enrolled in Nursing at GOTAFE. Jack has been in the course for almost a semester and is currently enjoying the subjects Anatomy and Physiology of Humans (APH), learning about how the body functions and learning Nursing Fundamental Skills. Placements are also coming up, firstly with two weeks of Aged Care in mid June at the Waranga Memorial Hospital at Rushworth.
Jack expects to complete his course midyear in 2018 and move directly into the Bachelors Degree at La Trobe University courtesy of his dual enrolment. Jack plans to stay regional and work with outlying communities once he has completed his degree. Jack says, “the training facilities are great at GOTAFE in a realistic environment which is important for preparing you for your placements.”
Nursing runs in the family with Jack’s Mother and Aunt working as Nurses, and Jack’s sister is currently studying midwifery. It took Jack awhile but eventually came to the conclusion that he was destined for the family career. Jack says, “Be ready to be challenged, but if you love working with people and caring for people, you will love the course. There are infinite area’s you can work in in the future and I’ve found my life long career finally and am very happy.”
Nursing sound like a interesting career? Mid year enrolments are now open, click here to apply now.
GOTAFE celebrated the success of their students last night with an Awards Recognition Ceremony held at the Parklake Hotel in Shepparton. The event recognised students who successfully completed their studies in 2016 within the Services sector including Business, IT, Art and Design, Sport and Recreation, Community Services and Health.
Three students were awarded Outstanding Student Awards for successfully completing their studies:
- Outstanding Business Student, Stephanie Bell, Certificate III in Business (BSB30115)
- Outstanding Health Student, Sarah Trevena, Diploma of Nursing (HLT51612)
- Outstanding Community Services Student, Rylie Kerambrun, Diploma of Community Services (CHC52015)
GOTAFE Executive Manager for Services Industries, Louise Pearce, was excited to catch up with the students to find out where their training has taken them.
“We are excited to see these newly qualified students enter the local workforce and use their skills to better the community. GOTAFE is dedicated to providing regional students with access to unique programs, facilities and pathways to university.”
This event is one of a series held throughout the region this March.
GOTAFE has partnered with a number of organisations and universities to create more options for students to obtain higher qualifications. Specifically the partnership with La Trobe University provides students with a unique opportunity to complete a diploma and a degree in one package.
Dual Enrolment enables students to co-enrol into a diploma and degree at the same time – offering students a streamlined pathway to gaining both qualifications. Students gain the flexibility of either:
• completing a diploma and entering the workforce or
• continue studying and graduate with both a TAFE diploma and a La Trobe University degree.
Last week GOTAFE Sport & Recreation students were given a special treat when asked to assist the Collingwood Football Club on their community camp in Wangaratta. Given the workload on the players AFL Victoria’s Zac Guilffoyle approached Sport and Recreation to assist in the drills with Hundreds of primary school children. GOTAFE students worked alongside the Collingwood elite across two days which saw them utilise coaching techniques and strategies taught during their Diploma of Sports Development course. GOTAFE teacher Richard Mallows says that students weren’t daunted by the task and excelled when working together their AFL role models.
In reciprocation for their work students were treated to a Q& A session with four of the players in the classroom at HP Barr Reserve after the Wednesday Morning session. Players Included Shepparton’s own Steele Sidebottom, 2nd year player Tom Phillips, High flying Melbourne recruit Jeremy Howe and former Murray Bushrangers ruckman Max Lynch. The Q & A session was also attended by the football media, which included Fox Sports and Channels Seven, Ten & Nine, who also conducted a press conference at the Barr Reserve. Students gained a valuable insight of the day to day life of an AFL player asking questions that related to fitness, pre-game preparation, psychology, diet and what the players do in their past time. Players also spoke of their own paths to the top level and the demands of the modern game. The evolving Woman’s AFL competition was also discussed, Steele Sidebottom suggesting that it was great for the game in general. Many GOTAFE students commented that how down to earth the players were and stayed around for a casual chat after the activities.
GOTAFE teachers Richard Mallows, Sharlene Wohlers and Lisa Purcell say that the experience was fantastic for students as it gave a rare insight into the preparation of elite athletes and how high profile people handle themselves in the community. The Teachers went on to say that students taught during the Diploma of Sports Development will have a greater understanding of elite sport given this rare opportunity. The opportunity reaffirms the strong links that GOTAFE Sport and Recreation have with industry such as AFL Victoria.
In late 2016, the Community Services Team joined the Health Department. This is an internal change that will have little impact on courses, however there are a number of benefits to students, including:
• Improved access to clinical laboratory facilities
• Smoother transition to other health programs – particularly Diploma of Nursing
• Consistent approach to teaching and learning for all health courses
Contact our Health and Nursing Team to find out more.
Susan Huffer has recently accepted a new role within GOTAFE, and for those of you that have enjoyed working with Susan within the health sector, don’t worry, she now feels she has more opportunity to work with the community, make regular visits and personally develop business opportunities, so it’s likely you will see more of her than before.
Susan describes her new role:
I have been privileged with an opportunity to strengthen the position of GOTAFE in regional Victoria through industry and community engagement.
I am most excited about exploring new opportunities and growing existing partnerships.
Q: Name two projects that you are keen to talk about?
For the first time, we can now offer Certificate III in Dental Assisting. We are only one of two regional TAFE’s to offer this training outside of Melbourne.
We are also building relationships with local football clubs and will offer tailored workshops on leadership, conflict management, bullying, harassment and fostering cultural diversity.
We hope that through this training we can build their capabilities and create clubs that are inclusive, and accepting of diversity.
I think it is so important to make clubs and sporting organisations safer, more accepting and more cultural inclusive environment for players and their families, committee members and the general community.
Q: Why do you think these roles are so important to GOTAFE and the broader community?
A: These roles are all about engaging with industry and getting the GOTAFE name out there.
Q: What skills do you bring to this role?
A: I have a lot of existing industry contacts. I have worked with so many people over the years as a nurse as well as developing programs as a Team Leader in nursing. There is trust there, people know me and trust me. I can talk to anyone, I am not here to sell, I am here to listen and offer solutions that meet their priorities.
Q: What message do you want to get out there about these roles?
A: I want organisations and individuals to seek out myself and my colleagues. I want people to partner with us because they know we can meet their needs, we are quality, we are local, we are flexible and we want to work with them to help their achieve their training goals.
I am passionate about further developing industry relationships and supporting our partners to achieve their goals.
Debra started the Diploma of Nursing with GOTAFE in July 2014 after deciding she wanted to up-skill from Certificate IV in Aged Care.
GOTAFE Trainer Catherine Conrick was very complimentary about Debra who continued to work in the Aged Care environment whilst completing her studies part-time.
“Debra’s career goal was to complete her B Nursing and she has already completed pre-enrolment at La Trobe University,” said Catherine.
“Debra’s assignment work was a consistently high standard throughout the course and her attendance record was been exemplary.
“No matter what else has been going on in her life, her commitment to her studies and her goals has always been a priority.”
“She actively role models professionalism.”She carried that professionalism into her placement work where the feedback we received from her clinical placement co-ordinators reflected her interactions with peers and teachers in the classroom.”
“Her placement co-ordinators all commented that Debra has excellent communication and interpersonal skills with both staff and clients/patients.
“They also said that she demonstrated excellent practical skills both in placement and in the simulated environment, she also possess an excellent understanding of professional and ethical nursing in her skills and competencies.”
“I wish Debra the best of luck in her future career, it has been a joy to watch her grow and excel.”
Above: Debra pictured during December 2016 at the ANMF Awards Night held in Melbourne.
Telehealth utilises advanced telecommunication technologies to exchange health information and provide health care services across geographic, time, social and cultural barriers. Essentially you can speak with a health professional via a teleconference facility available at health services where a doctor may not usually be available. Telehealth replaces travel!
Specifically what is GOTAFE doing with Telehealth?
- GOTAFE has purchased six video conferencing enabled prac carts giving Diploma of Nursing students practical experience with the technology.
- GOTAFE have also joined Health Informatics Society of Australia (HISA)
- GOTAFE presented at the Rural and Regional Clinical Education Benchmarking (REdBark) forum in conjunction with North East Health on the implementation of the digital health care environment.
- GOTAFE endorses the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) Standards for Practice specifically competency in the safe use of healthcare technology.
At the end of this month Noah Smyth will have completed Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015) at GOTAFE’s Benalla Campus.
The six month course exposed Noah to the Health sector. He learnt to care for the elderly and people living with disabilities in the classroom, plus he gained hands on experience during work placement, two weeks of which was spent in a nursing home and one week in Home and Community Care in Benalla. “Placement was a good way to cement what was learnt in the classroom as well as meet people who work in the sector.”
Noah had a really positive experience while studying at GOTAFE. “The Trainers were engaging and supportive during my studies. The course was enjoyable. We had fun as a group and I have made friends.”
“GOTAFE is a good place to study this course, because they provide a supportive environment and it’s easy to learn, they encouraged us to better ourselves.” Catherine Conrick the Team Leader Operations for Health in Wangaratta says the Certificate III Individual Support course is the ideal start for someone who is interested in a career in Health.”
“It is an entry point for employment and a foundation for future educational opportunities in the health industry including nursing. Health is a growth area both regionally and nationally and a very rewarding career for those who are people orientated.”
In the New Year, Noah will continue his studies at GOTAFE and will be enrolling in a Diploma of Nursing at our Benalla Campus.
GOTAFE is running Information Sessions for Individual Support and Nursing courses on Thursday 12 January 2017 or for other courses visit our website or call 1300 GOTAFE (468 233).