A total of 63 Solomon Islanders proudly graduated with certificates in 10 different programs from the Australia-Pacific Technical College (APTC) at a graduation ceremony in Honiara on Tuesday 9 May.
The new graduates were awarded qualifications in programs that included: Community Services, Engineering - Mechanical Trades – (Diesel Fitting, and Machining), Electrotechnology Electrician, Hospitality, Individual Support, Painting and Decorating, Plumbing, Light Vehicle Mechanical Technology and Youth Work.
APTC is an innovative development project funded by the Australian Government, delivering internationally-recognised Australian skills and qualifications for a wide range of vocational careers for skilled workers across the Pacific region.
The Australian High Commissioner to Solomon Islands, His Excellency, Mr Roderick Brazier, delivered the opening address at the graduation.
“Australia is well known across the globe for its high quality vocational education and training system, and we’re pleased to be able to share our knowledge and experience with our neighbours and friends across the Pacific through the Australia-Pacific Technical College.” H.E. Brazier said.
“Today you are all graduating with Australian qualifications that are recognised across the globe. This is an outstanding accomplishment; you should all be extremely proud of yourselves,” H.E. Brazier told the graduates.
H.E. Brazier also congratulated the 38 female graduates at the ceremony, who made up more than half of the graduating class. This included two female trades graduates, from the Certificate III in Electrotechnology Electrician and Certificate III in Painting and Decorating programs.
To date, more than 1,115 Solomon Islanders have graduated from APTC, of which, 472 are women.
The graduating class also included a hearing impaired student, Mr Erick Notere who was awarded a Certificate III in Painting and Decorating qualification, after successfully completing his six-month training in Fiji.
APTC’s strong inclusive focus ensures equal access for women, people from rural and remote areas and small island states and people with disabilities.
A key highlight of the ceremony was the group of pioneering students who graduated from the Certificate III in Community Services program, which was successfully delivered in Solomon Islands, for the first time last year. APTC worked collaboratively with industry partners who provided work placements for the students.
The new graduates have undertaken studies at APTC campuses in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.
APTC continues to partner with national tertiary education providers to deliver quality technical and vocational education and training (TVET). Last semester, APTC and Don Bosco Technical Institute (DBTI) in Henderson jointly delivered the Certificate II in Hospitality to 22 workers of the hospitality industry. The students, who were the biggest cohort of graduates at this ceremony, had the opportunity to undertake training at the newly refurbished Isles Café and kitchen.
APTC is also currently delivering Certificate III in Carpentry from the APTC Skills Barn at DBTI.
APTC, through a partnership with national TVET provider, Solomon Islands National University (SINU), is also delivering training to the first cohort of 17 Certificate III in Hospitality (multi-skills accommodation) students at the newly refurbished SINU kitchen facility in Kukum.
Through an ongoing collaboration with the Australian Government funded Skills for Economic Growth TVET project (S4EG), APTC has been supporting the professional development of Solomon Islanders and the national TVET sector, through its Training and Assessment, Leadership and Management and Civil Construction Supervision (for Solomon Power employees) programs.