Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke was in Temora last week with Shadow Minister for Skills, TAFE and Tertiary Education Justin Clancy, to meet with small businesses, and hear first-hand the benefits for both employees and employers, of vocational education and training.
“National Skills Week has just wrapped up for another year, so it was a good opportunity for the shadow minister and I to talk with some of the small business owners in town, and learn more about how they’re harnessing the very real advantages that come with employing young people who have developed their skills and knowledge through vocational education,” Ms Cooke said.
“Not everyone is destined for university, and we’ve seen in Temora great examples of how vocational education is a very real pathway to career success.
“Vocational education allows students to think outside the box and apply their talents in areas they may not have otherwise thought about; for example, someone who has a passion for gaming might now consider a career in agriculture, given how high-tech that industry is becoming; it’s not just about ploughing paddocks anymore, it’s also become very technologically focused.
“And on the flip side, we’ve seen too how small businesses are reaping the benefits of vocational education. Given my small business background, I know all too well the value of this sort of hands-on skills training, and how it provides prospective employees with the ability to hit the ground running when they take that step into the workforce.
“The shadow minister and I have been so impressed by the innovation and manufacturing that is going on right here in our backyard, and it’s exciting to think that there are opportunities for students – through vocational education and training – to get in at the ground level, and work their way up in businesses that are operating locally and beyond,” she said.