Southern Cross Catholic Vocational College (SCCVC) was delighted to welcome Dr Geoff Lee, MP, NSW Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education, to the College on November 5.
Minister Lee had visited SCCVC briefly, as he was a Keynote Speaker at the Australian College of Educators/NSW Teachers Guild/MWLP VET in Schools 2019 Forum in July hosted by SCCVC. This Forum, in its third year, was cross-sectoral including VET educators from Government, Catholic and Independent schools.
The 2019 VET in Schools Forum focussed on the topic Excellence in VET Practice.
The Minister toured the College, engaging with students and staff alike. Dr Lee brought many questions, looking to glean ideas and wisdom from SCCVC, the two-time winner of the Australian Training Awards ‘School Pathways to VET’ Award-the only school to have done so, and a clear affirmation of the quality pathways SCCVC offers. In September this year Dr Lee also presented Awards to the winners of the NSW Training Awards, including the Award for VET in Schools Student of 2019, Kelsey Commons who is a 2019 SCCVC graduate.
Of particular interest to the Minister is the experience of School-Based Apprentices and Trainees (SBATs). Dr Lee is concerned about skills shortages in NSW, in how we can attract and retain the next generation of skilled, talented and committed trades and crafts people. Last month SCCVC was invited and participated at a Round Table Workshop organised for the Minister to discuss SBATs in NSW with education and industry representatives.
Dr Lee strongly commended the work of SCCVC, and was impressed by the students he engaged with. Their can-do attitude, their flexibility, their resilience and their commitment to their trade and pathway was something the Minister reflected and commented on.