A Central Coast Community College teacher has won the NSW VET Trainer of the Year Award, presented on 9 October. Erin Jacob (pictured), a dedicated and talented trainer/teacher at the College, has worked with disadvantaged cohorts and students with disabilities to pave the way for new training delivery initiatives throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Erin designs trauma-informed programs for students who’ve experienced hardship. Her innovative Step Forward and Keep on Stepping programs at Central Coast Community College successfully re-engage individuals in learning and facilitate pathways to education and employment.
Students are typically unemployed, at risk of homelessness and/or escaping domestic violence. With a focus on work-based skills and art therapy, students can also test drive jobs in business, IT, retail, and hospitality. During COVID-19, Erin quickly navigated the delivery of online learning. Her trainers delivered real-life demonstrations to hundreds of at-risk participants boosting their well-being during this distressing period.
Due to Erin’s hard work, the college received a substantial contribution from the NSW Government to create the Step Forward Learning Centre, a safe space for trauma survivors.