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Education lecturer crowned Australian Trainer of the Year

20 November 2023

Congratulations to our education lecturer Holly Gudsell on being crowned the 2023 Australian Training Awards’ Trainer of the Year at a special ceremony in Hobart last Friday.

The Australian Training Awards are the peak national awards that showcase best practice in vocational education and training (VET). Each State and Territory hold their own awards with winners invited to compete for a national award title.

Holly stood out from a strong field of finalists due to her work developing and delivering a new program for the Department of Education to upskill Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Officers (AIEOs) across Perth Metropolitan Schools.

Her interest in Aboriginal education was first developed after accepting a high school teaching position in a remote community near Fitzroy Crossing.

This promoted a change in career direction for Holly, moving to a lecturing position in Education Support at North Metropolitan TAFE where she was soon approached to develop the new AIEO program.

Here she delivered a "mixed-mode" course which successfully supported Aboriginal students through the Certificates III and IV in Education Support.

Holly said she was surprised but honoured to be announced as the winner.

“Having spent the week in Hobart getting to know all the other finalists in my category and hearing their inspiring training stories, I was truly so shocked to hear that is was my name being called out,” she said.

“I was beyond thrilled to see that the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education officer course that I helped to create, and deliver was recognised on the national stage.

“I pride myself on adapting to the needs of my diverse students and so to have this affirmed was truly a career highlight for me. It will be a night I will never forget!”

Holly said the experience at the Australian Training Awards had reinforced her passion and commitment to upskilling Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education Officers and looked forward to using the platform to continue advocating for the upskilling of as many Aboriginal educators as possible across our WA schools and beyond.

Congratulations to our lecturer Anthony Georgeff who was also a finalist in the Excellence in Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice Award category.

Our students Robert Nicolosi, School-based Apprentice of the Year Award and Kai Baharthah-King, Vocational Student of the Year, were also finalists in their categories.

Read the full results(opens in a new tab) .