February Update

As this is the first SkillNews for 2014, I would like to wish you all a Happy New Year and hope that the year has started well for you.

2014 is shaping to be a big year for WorldSkills Australia (WSA) and indeed for the broader skills community. While we all wait to see what impact the changes in funding and models of delivery of VET will have, particularly amongst the TAFE sector and while we wait to see what the impact of companies pulling out of or greatly reducing their presence in Australia, one matter around skills remains constant. We are still faced with a lack of a skills respect culture in Australia. Not enough is being done to promote the status of skills or trade based careers – amongst young Australians, their parents, school teachers and careers advisers. Collectively we need to do more to dispel some of the myths surrounding skills and to promote skills and trades as viable first choice career options.

The 2014 WSA National Competition will be held in Perth in September – the first time we have been back in Perth for 25 years. While planning for the event continues, WSA regions are busily preparing competitors for their biggest challenge to date. The efforts to date of these regional champions will inspire others and their efforts in Perth along with an extensive Try’aSkill program in addition to other activities that will ensure that the 2014 WSA National Competition will be the Ultimate Skills Challenge and will be the perfect vehicle for promoting skills, skills respect and skills excellence.