Issue 6 - 2 July 2012 enews home

New Head of VET Programs 'excited about oil and gas sector growth'


By Leanne Coleman

Adam Bourke

CDU's new Head of VET Programs Dennis Tonkin is excited about emerging opportunities for training delivery in the Territory

The newly appointed Head of VET Programs at Charles Darwin University, Dennis Tonkin, brings to the position more than 20 years of experience in the Vocational Education and Training and university sectors.

Mr Tonkin has held a number of senior roles and has a wealth of experience in the areas of teaching and learning, and broader institutional operational functions, in transnational education in China, business development, quality management, and particular specialist knowledge in the field of business education.

An outstanding professional educator, his specialist knowledge includes course design and development, marketing of educational services and delivery of transnational teaching programs, strategic educational leadership and delivery of innovative teaching programs.

Arriving recently from Victoria, Mr Tonkin said he was excited about the growth potential of the VET sector at CDU and contributing to vocational training in the Territory.

"What excites me is the development of the gas and energy industry in the Northern Territory," he said. "The inevitable growth of this sector and allied industries will provide huge opportunities for training and development, not only in the Territory, but also in South-East Asia and China."

With a passion for improving training delivery methods, Mr Tonkin's experience and interests also include significant international projects developing curriculum and training programs in Abu Dhabi, Saudi Arabia, China and as part of the tsunami rebuilding effort in Thailand.

As a recipient of a Fulbright Teacher Exchange Scholarship, Mr Tonkin spent 12 months at Portland Community College, Oregon, USA, teaching and researching online training systems.