Students roll up sleeves and try hand at vocational skills


Try'a Skill students making schnitzels in the butchery at Alice Springs campus

More than 200 Central Australian middle school students will be prompted to think about their futures as they participate in a variety of hands-on activities at Charles Darwin University’s Alice Springs campus today and tomorrow.

The Year 9 students will be given nine tasks, which include making bird huts from wood in the construction workshop, pot-plant hangers in the metal workshop and beef schnitzels in the butchery.

Senior Vocational Education and Training Advisor Lyle Mellors said some of the students would make a return trip of more than 1000km to participate in the annual Try’a Skill event.

“It is a popular interactive program that allows students to try their hand at a variety of vocational skills,” he said.

“They will pull the head off a four-cylinder engine and reassemble it under the supervision of our automotive lecturers, and style and spray-colour each other’s hair, with the assistance of our hairdressing staff.”

Mr Mellors said new activities in community services and electro technology would provide students with valuable insights into employment opportunities in remote communities.

“We are delighted to have the support of Power and Water Corporation, who will show students how a water tester is used to monitor the quality of drinking water in remote communities.

“Similarly, our community services staff will explain how the certificate courses on offer are essential employment pre-requisites for people seeking employment in the youth, aged and disability sectors in remote communities.”

Mr Mellors said students also would be given an opportunity to inspect Civil Train’s front-end loader simulator used to train heavy-machinery operators.

Try’a Skill, now in its seventh year in Alice Springs, is organised by a consortium comprising the Department of Business, Group Training NT, Australian Apprenticeships Centre NT and CDU.

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