The Australian Training Awards 2011 @ The Brisbane Convention Centre

The who’s who of the training sector flew into Brisbane on Friday 25 November to celebrate the best of the best in vocational education and training (VET) at the 2011 Australian Training Awards.
Held annually to coincide with the meeting of the Standing Council on Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment, the Australian Training Awards are the peak, national awards for VET, recognising and rewarding organisations and individuals for their outstanding commitment and contribution to skilling Australia.
Excellence in VET was recognised across 17 categories including the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award, presented to Stella Axarlis AM for her history of distinguished service to VET practice.
This year’s awards also included the inaugural National Focus categories including five awards acknowledging the exemplary role played by those who strive to develop a more skilled, flexible and socially inclusive workforce.
The much coveted Australian Apprentice of the Year accolade was awarded to Victoria’s Colin Wilson from the Yarra Valley’s award winning restaurant Chateau Yering.
Organisations delivering training were recognised over six categories including the highly sought after Employer of the Year Award which was won by Hutchinson Builders from Queensland.
The winner of the Large Training Provider of the Year Award was TAFE SA Regional, recognised for their outstanding commitment to providing VET to over 24,000 students in regional South Australia.
Industry was recognised through the presentation of the inaugural Industry Collaboration Award – presented to SPC ARDMONA for their collaboration with the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union and the National Food Institute in delivering an induction to leadership program in the Goulburn Valley region of Victoria.
The depth of talent of the VET sector was on display at the awards with foyer displays from the Creative Industry Programs unit of Brisbane’s Metropolitan South Institute of TAFE; stunning Queensland inspired floral table centre pieces provided students from the Brisbane North Institute of TAFE; and the Australian Dance Performance Institute provided a breathtaking opening dance performance.

VJ Thomas Greader