Illawarra students excel at Education Awards

TAFE NSW Illawarra’s TVET students and teacher cleaned up at the Workplace Learning Excellence in Vocational Education and Training (VET) awards this week.

The Awards held at the Sage Hotel, Wollongong recognise excellence for private and public high school students studying a VET course across the Illawarra region.

Lachlan Rye won the coveted Student of the Year award and VET Student of the Year, Troy Bartrim was awarded Student of the Year – Primary Industries, Abbey Fowler won Student of the Year – Human Services and Jackson Shearer was awarded School Based Apprentice of the Year.

Lachlan Rye, a Certificate II in Business student is one step closer to his dream of owning a gym.

“Winning the two Awards is awesome. I didn’t think I could win because there were so many kids from so many different categories,” says Lachlan.

“The Business course is really good. It’s a great start and gives you the necessary skills you need for everything,” he says.

TAFE NSW Illawarra is also celebrating a win for Teaching Excellence in Student Focus and Outcomes that was awarded to Gavin Priest, Teacher Carpentry and Joinery at Wollongong campus for his exceptional contribution to high school students.

“I love the trade and I just want the students to learn,” he says.

Gavin teaches Certificate II in Construction Pathways for high school students who are studying the non-ATAR Higher School Certificate, as part of the Work Readiness Achievement Program.

“I consider myself as more than a teacher. I give them life skills and try to deliver projects that they can relate back to real life experiences. I just want them to succeed,” he says.

Gavin delivers the course at Illawarra Sports High School and concentrates on carpentry projects that benefit the school.

“We made carpentry benches and seating last year. This year we are making planter boxes, painting the seats from last year and now we are making a chicken coup for the school.”

Special congratulations to Abbey Dawson and Kyle Hughes who received a Certificate of Excellence award and all the nominees across the VET sector.