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Araluen partnership means better career and learning partnership for the community

21 Aug 2017

Araluen has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Melbourne Polytechnic that will reimagine how mainstream higher learning can best be delivered to people with intellectual disabilities, and to post-secondary students who wish to forge a career in the Health and Community Services sector. 

Together, Araluen and Melbourne Polytechnic will co-design accredited and non-accredited training paths that lead both the education and disability sectors in addressing the need for better, industry-linked skill development options that are customised to the requirements of people with intellectual disability, and the workforce that supports them.

Araluen participants, like James Barden, can now aim at new, achievable life and learning goals linked directly to their passions - “I love dogs. I never thought about learning to take care of them. Now Araluen could help me get a (Companion Animal Services) certificate so I can learn something that makes me happy and I know I’ll be good at.”

Additionally, the broad-ranging partnership recognises mutual advantage in developing innovative new cross-training models;

- Araluen will manage student disability industry placements for Melbourne Polytechnic students, giving them essential ‘real world’ experience guided by an organisation that is a leader within the field they operate 

- Melbourne Polytechnic - a premier provider of vocational and higher education – will become Araluen’s preferred training partner, best fulfilling the professional development needs of this highly-skilled, expanding workforce

Ross Coverdale, CEO of Araluen, foresees a bright future for Araluen’s participants thanks in part to Melbourne Polytechnic’s strong links to industry. 

“Melbourne Polytechnic creates hands-on learning opportunities that give students the chance to put their skills into practice and show potential employers what they can do. Araluen’s participants thrive when their many abilities are recognised. Being at the heart of inclusive, state-of-the art environments as community members will ultimately make them more job-ready and lead to an explosion in pride and confidence that will drive bigger and better achievements.” 

“We very pleased to have Araluen on board as a partner, and as an active participant at our Greensborough campus,” says Tony Lander, Director Industry and Government Partnerships, Melbourne Polytechnic. “We believe there is a great synergy between the two organisations, and both our students and Araluen’s participants stand to gain a great deal from our cooperative activities.”

Araluen will shortly occupy dedicated space at Melbourne Polytechnic’s Greensborough Campus, strengthening the latter’s vision to build a complete-service community education hub. Ultimately, the partnership agreement will put career and learning success within closer reach for many more local people as Araluen expands self-managed support to six Melbourne Polytechnic campuses throughout the Banyule/Nillumbik/Whittlesea growth corridor. 

Photo: Rob Wood, CEO of Melbourne Polytechnic, with Bruce Martyn, Chair of Araluen. Photo by Phil Spicer, Melbourne Polytechnic.

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