Melbourne’s William Angliss Institute Students Visit APTC Vanuatu Campus
Nine William Angliss Institute students with their Trainer and Coordinator, George Vajda, visited Vanuatu on a cultural exchange visit as part of their course from 19 October to the 26 October 2015. The visiting students were hosted by the Australia-Pacific Technical College (APTC) students of the Certificate III in Tourism. APTC is an innovative development program funded by the Australian Government to help students gain Australian-standard skills and qualifications for a wide range of technical and vocational careers throughout the Pacific.
The William Angliss students and their trainer were greeted and welcomed at the airport by their APTC Trainer and Training Assistant, Kevin Tabi and Evelyn Maseng. They were also welcomed by the APTC students, Tourism Trainers and the two Specialist Vocational Training Advisors, Gareth McGrath and Anne-Maree Jefferies.
Under the watchful eyes and guidance of their Trainer and Training Assistant, the APTC Tourism students were great hosts to their visitors. They put together an amazing tour itinerary with costings, including making bookings, follow ups and confirmation of tours with the suppliers for their friends. They also carried out risk assessments on sites to be visited and drew up contingency plans in case of an emergency. To ensure everything went well they also developed a run list to manage the tours.
Tours were organised to various popular tourist sites in Port Vila which included The Secret Garden (flora and fauna and history tour), Mele Cascades Waterfall Tour, Ekasup Cultural Village Tour, Coongoola Day Cruise, Vanuatu Jungle Zipline, Mele Beach Bar Fire Dance, Eton Beach and Blue Lagoon. The students also took part in a Sunday Church Service at the Anglican Church at Tagabe area in Port Vila.
The APTC students displayed well developed communication skills during their commentary and great tour guiding skills. The visitors were impressed with the Tourism student’s organisation and commentary throughout the whole trip and already their institution is planning to send more students on similar tours in the future. This is the second trip the William Angliss Institute has made to Vanuatu in collaboration with the APTC students. The first visit was organised in 2014.
As part of their assessments, delivery sessions were also conducted for both groups at the APTC Vanuatu Campus. This delivery was in the skill areas of Showing Social and Cultural Sensitivityandthe topic: Cultural Diversity and Influences. Both groups had a lot to learn from each other during class.
A farewell get together was hosted at Poppy’s on the Lagoon where the students got to share their experiences, the evening was concluded with a short speech from the APTC Country Manager, Mr Nick Crosling who stressed the importance of having a continuous partnership where students may return to embark on volunteer opportunities in the Pacific, and encouraging APTC students to further their studies locally and in Australia should they find the opportunity.
William Angliss Institute is a TAFE institute located in the CBD area in Melbourne, Australia and provides a specialist centre for training and vocational education in Hospitality, Tourism and the Culinary Arts. This cultural exchange program has been established since 2014 to benefit both institutions in Tourism. Such cultural exchange programs are beneficial and are inspirational to students of both institutes. They also provide cultural and educational privileges for both the visiting students and the hosting students.