Innovative pathways to tertiary study
Opened in 2015, the Wangaratta Regional Study Centre is a partnership project between CSU and Goulburn Ovens TAFE established to service the needs of the region and directly address low rates of tertiary education engagement in the area.
t any given time, CSU has around 400 students studying in North East Victoria.
Another core role of the Wangaratta Regional Study Centre is running Outreach programs in local high schools to build students’ aspirations for tertiary education. While this includes attending regional career days and specific course focus days, in Small Business Month last year, CSU trialled a new format by bringing six entrepreneurs into local schools to talk candidly about their experiences. One of those entrepreneurs was CSU graduate Dr Amanda Lugsdin, a veterinarian and practice owner of companion animal clinic Dr Paws in Wangaratta. This is a second career for Mandy, who graduated with a degree in Agricultural Science from CSU in 1997. Mandy said she was delighted to be involved in the Outreach and Aspiration Building Program. “I believe it is very important to not only help mentor the younger generation entering the workforce but also to help inspire them with the wonderful world of opportunity that is at their fingertips. “It’s hard to know what to do as a career sometimes. Not everybody gets it right the first time and the reality nowadays is several job changes and that’s okay.
These students now have a facility to call their own in the Wangaratta Regional Study Centre. As Centre Manager Ilena Young explains, the Centre was funded in 2012 by the Commonwealth Government. “By putting a university in the region, the aim was to support the region and its workforce and deliver outcomes and create pathways to university through TAFE. The project was funded in this area because the Hume has a persistent low rate of engagement in tertiary education. “Right now we offer a Veterinary Technology Integrated program, where students start with subjects at TAFE to get their Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing and then go straight into the CSU Bachelor of Veterinary Technology. Vet nurses who already have their Certificate IV can have that recognised and articulate straight into the Bachelor qualification. “We also service the needs of online students and run a study skills day at the beginning of session two for students studying accounting, agriculture, environmental science and nursing. Having the Centre in Wangaratta means that we can offer those students extra support right on their doorstep.”