Fee-free training programs new careers for Chase and James

Published on: 02 Jan 2024

Image of a person and text: Fee free Tafe - Chase's success story. Certificate III and IV in Information Technology

Two Launceston IT students have turned a Fee-Free TAFE course into a career.

Chase Duggan and James Youd studied Certificates III and IV in Information Technology fee-free at TasTAFE and have quickly found jobs where they put their training into practice.

Chase and James are both graduates of Newstead College and found themselves studying together at TasTAFE, but arrived at TasTAFE following very different paths. For Chase, he had his sights set on studying the certificates at TasTAFE as soon as he finished year 11. He had expected to be paying for the training, so was excited to learn fee-free.

Meanwhile, James was driving home from a friend’s house late at night when he spotted a sign by the highway. He saw that TasTAFE was offering fee-free courses and there was an upcoming orientation day. After working in sales at a computer store, James was unemployed at the time and at a bit of a loose end.

“When I saw there was fee-free study available, I knew it was something I needed to try. As I was unemployed, I was spending as little money as possible on food and resources. If it hadn’t been free, I simply wouldn’t have been able to do it,” James said.

Once they were both at TasTAFE, Chase and James excelled in their training. Both credit the contribution from teachers Paul Vandenberg and Scott Bryan to their success.

“I enjoyed their relaxed delivery of the course. They gave us all the skills we needed while making the content relevant to each person. TasTAFE was a really comfortable environment to learn in,” Chase said.

“It’s top tier teaching, I couldn’t recommend them more. Any question I had they were more than happy to answer it. I always felt like I could ask them anything and the information they were providing was clear. Scotty and Paul are both brilliant teachers and they really know what they’re talking about,” James agreed.

Soon after completing their training, Chase found work in software support for ReadyTech, while James is a Workshop Technician and Store Manager at Principal Computers. They both feel like they have roles in an industry they’ll be working in for the long haul, and recognise TasTAFE for laying the foundations of their careers.

“The skills that I learned at TasTAFE were directly related to my job and absolutely helped me get the job in the first place,” Chase said.

Applications for 2024 Fee-Free TasTAFE courses, including Certificates III and IV in Information Technology, are now open. Visit www.tastafe.tas.edu.au/fee-free to apply or find out more.

Fee-Free TAFE and vocational education is a joint initiative of the Australian and Tasmania Governments, providing tuition-free training places to students wanting to train, retrain or upskill.

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