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New campus manager for TI and NPA

[by Sarah Weir]

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Head of Campus for TAFE Queensland’s Thursday Island and Northern Peninsula Area campuses Jo Savage. Image: supplied

Jo Savage has returned to the Torres Strait after being appointed the Head of Campus for TAFE Queensland’s Thursday Island and Northern Peninsula Area campuses.


Ms Savage, who was born and raised on Thursday Island, said she was excited to take on the Head of Campus role.


“I will use my years of experience in the vocational education sector and my existing networks and relationships to ensure that vocational education and training is accessible to my people of the Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Region,” Ms Savage said.


“I will work closely with my TAFE Queensland colleagues from across the state to ensure we provide quality and meaningful training that empowers and creates sustainability,” she said.


Sustainability is a major focus for Ms Savage in her role as TAFE Queensland’s Principal Project Officer for the Torres Strait Maritime Pathways (TSMP) Project, which she will continue to manage alongside her Head of Campus duties.


“The TSMP Project assists the region’s commercial fishermen and women to acquire their Coxswains Grade 1 near Coastal Licence and be compliant to work in the maritime, tourism and transport industry,” Ms Savage said.


“The initiative has been operating as a joint partnership between TAFE Queensland and Torres Strait Regional Authority, with UAV Industries as a sub-contractor.


“As the Principal Project Officer, I’ve had the opportunity to visit and work on islands I’ve never been to before and I’ve been able to reconnect with and create new networks.


“At the start of each program I would arrive on an island and I was ‘the lady from TAFE’.

But by the end of the program I was known as sis, aunty, aka or even mama Jo, it’s been an incredibly rewarding experience.


“It has been wonderful witnessing the change this initiative has made to people’s lives and seeing the smiles and reactions of the graduates when they are presented with their awards and licences,” she said.


The TSMP Project is being rolled out in the top western region of the Torres Strait, with training to commence soon on Boigu Island.


Ms Savage said TAFE Queensland was also investigating options to deliver training to locals by locals.


“We’re exploring ways to work closely with and mentor local training and assessment graduates who will lead the delivery of TAFE Queensland courses on Thursday Island,” she said.


Ms Savage said it’s never too late to improve your education and pursue your career goals.


“Acquiring new skills and knowledge is empowering. If you are looking to change jobs or just make a change in your life, contact your nearest TAFE Queensland campus to investigate the best training options available to you,” she said.


“You can even make an appointment with an Indigenous Student Support Officer or Student Counsellor, and I am always available for a yarn and catch-up too.”

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