321 Fijians have joined the Australia Pacific Training Coalition’s (APTC) alumni network after gaining Australian qualifications in a virtual graduation on 19 March 2021.
As Australia’s flagship TVET investment in the Pacific, APTC has trained over 16,000 Pacific women and men, including more than 5,000 Fijians, since its commencement in 2007.
Keynote speaker, Fijian Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts, Hon. Rosy Akbar, congratulated the graduates, saying their graduation was possible through the value placed on education and its impact on their careers.
“You are what Fiji needs right now - your skills and talents are what will drive Fiji to ensure that we get through the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on our nation,” she said.
She also made special mention of the 103 women; 11 in Certificate III in Carpentry (CPC30211) and four hearing impaired in Certificate II in Skills for Work and Vocational Pathways (FSK20113), who graduated.
“As Minister for Education, I have yet another reason for why this graduation is a special one – 35 teachers from schools all across Fiji are graduating with the Diploma of Counselling,” she said.
She thanked Australia for its ongoing commitment to the Fijian Education Sector, which partners with the Fijian Government to improve learning outcomes for Fijian children.
Given the challenges posed by COVID-19, she was particularly impressed that students met the Australian Skills Quality Authority’s requirements, completed their program and earned Australian qualifications.
Australian High Commissioner to Fiji, John Feakes, congratulated the graduates, who join the 16,000-strong network of APTC alumni.
“It’s wonderful to see that despite the challenges brought on by COVID-19, you’ve all remained steadfast in your educational endeavours. You should all be very pleased with your efforts, as I’m sure your families are on this day. Well done to each of you, I look forward to following your journeys,” Mr Feakes said.
The graduates have attained a wide range of qualifications, including in construction, engineering, fashion, tourism and hospitality, aged care, education, counselling and International Skills Training.