August 15th, 2017

Upcoming National Skills Week, Australia’s pinnacle week celebrating vocational education and training (VET), provides an opportunity to encourage Australians to think about careers across a range of vocational sectors. Celebrated on August 28th– September 03rd, National Skills Week will celebrate a breath of career opportunities that provide career satisfaction and long term stability. One such industry sector providing strong employee benefits is the healthcare sector.  A career in healthcare can provide flexibility, career longevity and strong engagement with the community, amongst other benefits.

“The health workforce in Australia is large and diverse, with a job suited to those want to give back to their community.  It is time to recognise and celebrate the achievements of individuals in healthcare professions for the contribution they make to our society,” says Kirstin Casey, General Manager at SkillsOne.

This week marks the 10 day count down to the National launch of National Skills Week, which will be held on Monday 28th August at the Gold Coast Sports and Leisure Centre in Carrara.  The morning function will be a celebration of skills and training, attended by key stakeholders across the VET sector.  TAFE Queensland students will assist across the function providing music, filming, event assistance and engaging visual displays.

Nicola Lang, TAFE Queensland graduate and Australian Training Awards’ 2015 Vocational Student of the Year finalist, is a strong advocate for the vocational sector. For many years Nicola worked as a front desk receptionist at a hospital, until one day she was struck with a thought that would not leave her, the idea to begin studying to become an enrolled nurse.

Completing career change in her late 40s, Nicola began by undertaking a Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 nursing) at TAFE Queensland South West.

“Age should never be a barrier; I am a strong example of what one can achieve even after a thirty- year absence from any form of study,” said Nicola.

While studying, Nicola discovered a love for learning again, enjoying both the classroom and practical environment TAFE had to offer.

“It was surprising how much I enjoyed studying, I loved the classroom environment where there were teachers to ask questions of and such a wonderful practical room available to us,” said Nicola.

While studying, Nicola continued to work in the healthcare industry in patient care allowing her to learn from nurses and gain first-hand training experience. Her experience in front office and in patient care and her TAFE qualifications ensured Nicole graduated a multi skilled professional, adept at the workings of a busy ward.

Since completing her Diploma, Nicola has gone on to complete an Advanced Diploma and is enjoying working as an enrolled nurse at St Andrew’s Ipswich Private Hospital.

“I love my new career with a passion, I love being able to help people at a time when they are feeling quite vulnerable and if I can make a small difference to the improvement of their health and wellbeing during their illness and recovery, then I have accomplished what I set out to do,” said Nicola.

Nicola is looking forward to progressing into the emergency and rehabilitation departments to further enhance her clinical skills and experience, and promotes a career changes and further study to all those considering new opportunities.

“For anyone else considering studying, I would say go for it as the satisfaction and pride in oneself at having successfully completed your training is indescribable,” said Nicola.

For further information on Nicola’s story, or other engaging career stories from the Australian Training Awards, VET Alumni program or the Australian Apprenticeships Ambassadors program, visit the Australian Training Awards website.

SkillsOne will be showcasing VET qualifications during National Skills Week from 28 August to 3 September 2017. During this week, Australia will celebrate the limitless career opportunities available through a VET qualification. To organise an event, or take part in the many events that can be found across the country, visit the National Skills Week website.


For more information please contact: Kirstin Casey (General Manager at SkillsOne)

Mobile: 0420 652 558 Email:

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