Vocational Education pathways prepare students for life and work

The Beatles famously sang “I get by with a little help from my friends” and that certainly rings true for Israel Carter.

Israel Carter Israel Carter’s pathway from Vocational to Higher Education will see him graduate with a Bachelor of Design (Digital Media).
Friends already studying at RMIT said the University’s sound production courses and commitment to Indigenous education could be a good fit for him.
The proud Ngarrindjeri man first set foot on RMIT’s City campus in 2017 to study a Certificate IV in Music Industry (Sound Production).

That was the start of a Vocational to Higher Education journey that’ll see him graduate with a Bachelor of Design (Digital Media) this week.

And he isn’t stopping there. The 30-year-old has already started a Master in Design Innovation and Technology.

Carter said RMIT offered unique opportunities to take his interest in music production and sound from a hobby to a career.

“I always wanted to do more study after my certificate and advanced diploma, but didn’t know how,” he said.
“They had meetings about pathways and the advanced diploma took a year and a half off my Bachelor, which was really good.
“The Master in Design is more like innovative new technology and how it interacts in the real world. It’s a new challenge. I’d love to work in sound production for games or film, either as a freelancer or with a studio.”
Carter said he enjoyed the different aspects of University life, from attending a study tour in Malaysia and representing RMIT at the Indigenous Nationals sporting celebration, to being a student ambassador and academic tutor with the Ngarara Willim Centre.
The Centre is a dedicated gathering place for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and staff and also a place for the University community to gain a better appreciation for Indigenous culture, business and knowledge. 
“Ngarara Willim really helped me get into the course, get into University, meet the people at sound production and realise this was a course for me to study, especially during that first year, which was really challenging,” Carter said.
“The staff are really hands on and helpful with any sort of questions and problems you have, things like enrolment, scholarships, and opportunities that I probably wouldn’t have done otherwise.
“I actually got the job I had before coronavirus, as an acoustic engineer, through RMIT and a CareerTrackers internship.”
Melissa Di Francesco Graduating with a Diploma in Laboratory Technology, Melissa Di Francesco is looking foreward to pursuing a Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Laboratory Medicine).
While many of us feel squeamish at the sight of blood, Melissa Di Francesco is fascinated by the secrets it reveals.
This week the 20-year old will not only graduate with a Diploma in Laboratory Technology but has gained entry to the bachelor’s degree and landed a job in the industry.

Di Francesco’s RMIT journey began three years ago after enrolling in a Certificate IV in Tertiary Preparation before progressing to a Certificate IV in Laboratory Techniques.

Now graduating with a Diploma in Laboratory Technology, Di Francesco said she’d enjoyed everything about studying at RMIT.

“I’ve really liked the hands-on aspect, the environment and the friendships I’ve made, which I’ll maintain for a lifetime,” she said.

Program Manager in the School of Vocational Education, Engineering and Health Science, Penny Tresise, said Di Francesco’s positive approach had stood out from the start of her Diploma in Laboratory Technology.

“One of the brilliant things about Melissa is the way she’s built her skills, confidence and personal development right through to achieving a work placement facilitated by RMIT’s Work Integrated Learning (WIL) program,” she said.

The young student successfully applied for and completed a 30-day WIL placement at Melbourne Pathology (Chemical Pathology), which she credits for helping land her a job in the industry.

“I was quite nervous when I first started the placement at Melbourne Pathology, but I worked hard and asked lots of questions and that helped me gain confidence in what I was doing,” she said.

“I then applied for a lab assistant role there and after the interview when they offered me the job I was so excited I jumped in the air.”

Now Di Francesco is planning her next step, enrolling in a Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Laboratory Medicine) to achieve her ultimate dream.

“I want to become a medical scientist and my goal is to become a haematologist, studying and analysing blood to diagnosis diseases such as cancer,” she said.

“Blood fascinates me because it’s the main core of life and no-one really sees it like that. It’s what keeps us going and that’s what makes it so interesting.”

Congratulations to RMIT’s Class of 2020. This year’s graduating class are like no other: strong, resilient, and inspired. RMIT is excited to welcome the graduates into our global alumni network, spanning more than 140 countries and 400,000 alumni.

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