A partnership between TAFE NSW and Anglican Care in the Hunter is helping employees kick-start careers in Enrolled Nursing.
The Anglican Care workers recently participated in a Foundation Skills for Your Future Program at TAFE NSW Newcastle.
The fee-free initiative was specially tailored to improve their maths, English and digital literacy skills so they could successfully complete the entrance process for Enrolled Nursing and be better prepared for the higher level of effort required in the Diploma.
TAFE NSW Newcastle head teacher for career pathways Judy Markey said 10 Anglican Care employees were now enrolled in the TAFE NSW Diploma of Nursing.
“When they complete their studies, they will have achieved their career goal of becoming an Enrolled Nurse,” she explained.
Anglican Care learning and change partner Lauren Knight said they had always aimed to provide initiatives to upskill their workforce, guided by clinical experts.
“A substantial number of our employees expressed interest in upgrading their qualifications, skills and experience to Enrolled Nurse level, so we met with TAFE NSW to discuss opportunities,” she stated.
TAFE NSW prioritised 10 places in the 2021 Diploma program for Anglican Care employees and Anglican Care undertook to fund scholarships for those positions.
Ms Markey said interested employees would benefit from first completing the preparatory language, literacy and numeracy course and online self-assessment, funded through the federal government’s Foundations Skills for the Future initiative.
With the disruption of traditional learning-to-employment pathways due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been increasing acceptance of alternate pathways to work by both individuals and employers.
“This preparatory 10 days over 10 weeks course, now known as the EN Ready program, allowed those people to build the capability and skills needed to successfully complete the Diploma of Nursing qualification,” Ms Markey said.
Ms Knight added the $5,000 scholarship positions were offered to those employees who scored highest in the course and were preferred candidates following an interview and reference check selection process.
“We required them to commit to working with us as Enrolled Nurses for two years following completion of their training,” she said.
Studying the Diploma of Nursing requires the scholarship recipients to attend TAFE NSW Newcastle three days per week and work at designated Anglican Care sites a further two.
Six weeks into the course, Kim Davies, who works at Anglican Care’s C A Brown Lodge Residential Aged Care Home, said she could already see the difference in her nursing.
“I’m providing an enhanced level of care,” she stated.
“The Foundation Skills Are You Ready program also made a difference, as it improved my maths and English skills.”
Anglican Care home care employee Lauren Neal said the Diploma study was good, as it was a step up from what she had been doing.
“We’re currently studying subjects like infection control, WHS and communication,” she admitted.
“It helps with the personal care service that I provide to seniors living in the community.”
To find out more about studying nursing at TAFE NSW, phone 13 16 01 or visit www.tafensw.edu.au
Alternatively, to discover more about working at Anglican Care, phone 4958 0000 or visit https://anglicancare.com.au/careers/