Brand New Opportunity in Aged Care


GOTAFE and Shepparton Villages are excited to announce a new partnership to deliver high quality training in Aged Care to the Goulburn Valley.

Thanks to funds provided by State Government’s Regional Specialist Training Fund, brand new training opportunities are now available.

Delivered onsite at Shepparton Villages, Certificate III in Individual Support students will be exposed to 2 days per week of training over nine months, explained GOTAFE Partnership Engagement Manager Susan Huffer.

“Our population is ageing which means demand for qualified workers. Research by McCrindle suggests we need to add over 129,000 workers Australia-wide in the next 10 years, or over 2,055 per month*, which means you’ll never be without a job in the Aged Care Industry,” explained Mrs Huffer.

“This program has been specifically designed to encourage people to enter the aged care workforce in a supported environment and provide pathways to further education and employment opportunities.”

Shepparton Villages is currently undergoing significant expansion, with the new 120 bed $34 million Maculata Place nearing completion. The building is on track for completion with current timelines suggesting residents will be moved into the new facilities in November.

“It is our aim to involve new students in the move as much as possible. We want them to feel part of the team from the very beginning,” said Shepparton Villages CEO Kerri Rivett.

“We would like to encourage people with a caring disposition to take up this unique offer and find their purpose within the Aged Care industry.

“We have staff here who began as Trainees 20 plus years ago and have moved through the Village to find their place and sense of purpose, with many now running departments. We are committed to providing ongoing support for our employees to undertake further training in areas including Enrolled Nursing, Leisure and Health or Ageing Support. This industry truly has a place for everyone.”

More than $4 million was announced last month when the Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney visited GOTAFE. Funding will be used to provide 12 new courses to address community needs in growth areas such as agriculture industry expansion and innovation, community services, NDIS readiness and more.

“GOTAFE is vital to delivering quality training to people in Northern Victoria – that is why we are funding 12 new courses and boosting support for students,” said Minister Tierney.

“This funding means that more people will have access training closer to home and get the support they need to finish their course.”

The first intake of students will commence in Term 4 this year, with further intake opportunities planned in 2019. Students who demonstrate excellence in their training after the first 12 weeks may be offered employment with Shepparton Villages.

To apply for the Certificate III in Individual Support program, contact Susan Huffer at GOTAFE call 1300 GOTAFE (468 233) or email shuffer@gotafe.vic.edu.au.

ANMF Student Nurse Awards


GOTAFE Nursing student, Saskia Gargan has won the Australian Nursing & Midwifery Federation (ANMF) Outstanding Student Award for completing her studies in Diploma of Nursing (HLT51612) at the Benalla campus.
The ANMF Awards night is an annual event that recognises the individual academic achievements of nursing students across the education and training sector.
It acknowledges nursing and midwifery excellence and promotes further education and improved patient and client outcomes.
GOTAFE trainer, Rebecca Guy described Saskia as a very hard working determined student who was the obvious choice to win the award.
“Whilst juggling family life Saskia displayed at all times focus and determination in completing all that was asked of her to the best of her ability, within specified timelines and always of a very high standard. Saskia took great pride in all that she presented to us. In addition to this the way in which Saskia both conducted herself and communicated highlighted that she has all of the necessary attributes to make a wonderful successful nurse.”
Saskia has had encouragement from her trainers at GOTAFE to pursue further studies as they feel she will have great success it whatever she does.
“Saskia was an absolute pleasure to have as a student here at Benalla and we are very proud of all that she has achieved, and we wish her all the very best in all that she undertakes in her future nursing career.”

Womens Health Awareness Week 13-16 June


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.

Discovering Nursing as the forever career


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.

#goplaces

Shepparton campus students recognised for achieving goals


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 Nursing Partnerships


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.
Read more

Sport & Recreation students assist Collingwood community camp


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.

Internal change to benefit community services students


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.

Q&A with Susan Huffer


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.

Aged Care worker side steps into the Diploma of Nursing


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.