Course sparks interest

About a dozen students have enrolled in a hands-on alternative to VCE at Federation Training, where participants will put skills into practice at Traralgon’s VRI Hall.

FedTraining, together with Traralgon Neighbourhood Learning House, has developed a Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning program that incorporates the ongoing refurbishment of the VRI Hall.

VCAL program manager Mark Shelton said while there was one full class, he hoped for more and encouraged students to contact FedTraining to enrol before the course’s February start.

Mr Shelton said enrolled students were those looking for a more practically-based alternative to year 12 and interested in developing skills in a variety of areas.

“Students will get an opportunity to try their hand at a heap of different trades, whether it be horticulture, building, hospitality… as well as business stuff of course,” Mr Shelton said.

He said students could also study VCE subjects, including maths and English if they chose, but literacy and numeracy would be worked into the program.

TNLH VRI Hall project coordinator Joh Lyons said there were many projects students would be involved in, beginning with creating a wheelchair accessible entrance at the rear of the building.

“There’s a lot of opportunities. Obviously the sunflowers will be blooming in February – we might have some events around that and kids may choose to organise those,” Ms Lyons said, referring to the recent Get Sunflowered project.

She said the course’s structure would also be influenced by students’ interests.

“We’ll get to know the kids, see what they’re strengths are and we’ll be going on their strengths and developing that,” Ms Lyons said.

“The (VCAL students) will have the opportunity to choose. Because we have other groups helping it’s not reliant on them to do it.

“There’s lots to do and there’s lots of people that want some activity.”

She said the other groups included Lavalla College and Traralgon College VCAL students, plus Work For the Dole participants.

Ms Lyons said students would be able to get involved in the learning house’s Digital Shed as well as make use of FedTraining’s facilities.

Also commencing at the hall in February are children’s art classes, and a second term of yoga classes.

To enrol in the VCAL program phone FedTraining on 1300 133 717.

For more information on using the hall phone Joh Lyons on 0419 568 772.