The North Central Local Learning and Employment Network (NCLLEN) has recently welcomed three new staff members who have joined the team to help create opportunities for children and young people to thrive in education, work and life through partnerships that ensure they get the support they need when they need it.
Tori Gentle from Charlton, the newest staff member, commenced with NCLLEN earlier this month as a Project Officer (Middle Years).
Her first project will be to work on the establishment of a new chapter of the Rural Youth Network across the Buloke, Loddon and Gannawarra Shires (BLG) in partnership with Northern District Community Health Service to build on the North Central Youth Advisory Council established to support young people post Covid.
After a few weeks in the role, Tori is excited about the opportunities to open doors for young people living in north central Victoria and is grateful to YACVic for funding the program as part of its Umbrella project, and Youthrive for its support in establishing a BLG chapter of its statewide Rural Youth Network.
“The Rural Youth Network will be a great way to build up new skills, showcase existing ones, meet new people, have new experiences, give back to community and heaps more,” she said.
“There will be a range of volunteering, leadership, employment and scholarship opportunities available, as well as the chance to connect with like-minded people for learning, information sharing, social and professional growth.”
Joining the NCLLEN team in May were Julie Bourke as the Events Co-ordinator for the School to Work Program and Jacinta Sutton as Team Leader, Careers and Pathways.
The Events Co-ordinator role has been created as part of the new School to Work Contract funded by the Department of Education, with Julie responsible for planning, organising, and implementing several types of events, both small and large, to support north central schools and students transition from school to work.
“It is really exciting to collaborate with teachers and students to create opportunities for young people to discover the diverse range of careers available to them and the various pathways to each career,” she said.
“Since I have been on board I have worked with the North Central Trade Training Centre to include industry speakers as part of their VET “Taster” Day for Year 9 students, and with the Tertiary Information Service to host a mini-Careers Expo at Charlton Park, featuring Universities from across Australia as well as industry representatives from local government, agriculture and mining.
“Over the next few months we will be coordinating the Broader Horizon program at St Arnaud Secondary College – a group work experience program, utilising new virtual reality headsets for students to immerse themselves in a range of work environments, introducing “Find your Feet” a new concept in linking students to industry to explore career pathways, and other activities still in the pipeline.”
The Team Leader role is another new position at the North Central LLEN with Jacinta Sutton coming on board to provide an oversight and leadership role across the many careers and pathways program the NCLLEN facilitates, including School to Work, 21st Century Careers in Agriculture, Head Start, and a Careers Education Partnership with North Central schools.
With over 11 years’ experience in the VET sector with roles as Administration Manager, Campus Coordinator and providing high-level administrative support to senior management as Education Delivery Advisor at the Sunraysia Institute of TAFE, Jacinta’s skills in leadership, administration, information technology and evaluation made her a standout for the role.
“I am really excited about creating a culture of innovation that will enable our Careers and Pathways team to work to the best of their ability,” she said.
“My role is to look at ways to improve our work, and identifying ‘gaps’ in our service delivery, working with the CEO and Business Manager to identify new projects and initiatives, and securing the funds and resources to make these a reality.
“Eight weeks into the role, I am really enjoying working with the Careers and Pathways team to ensure we provide the very best opportunities for young people to thrive in education, work and life.”
To speak to a member of the North Central LLEN team, contact them on 03 5491 1144 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
This article appeared in The Buloke Times, 4 August 2023.