2022 CCA Annual Conference

2022 CCA Annual Conference: Rebuilding Community

The Community Colleges Australia (CCA) Annual Conference returns to Sydney for an in-person event on 5 & 6 April 2022, promising a stimulating, inventive and invigorating two days of domestic and international speakers, expert presenters and adult and community education (ACE) specialists.

Our theme: This year’s conference theme is Rebuilding Community, following what will have been (by April) more than two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, and its long-term impacts on Australian post-secondary education, training and communities. We plan to deal with both big and small questions: What’s next in post-secondary education, training and skills? How do we “build back better”? What’s to be learned from overseas experiences? What long-term impacts will the pandemic have on how we learn, how we teach and how we construct communities? What challenges still face us? What structures and approaches need to be changed and what should we keep?

Special events: The Conference will feature the award ceremonies of the first-ever “Community Education Trainer of the Year Awards” at the Gala Dinner on Tuesday 6 April. Our pre-conference social event highlight will be a sunset cruise on Sydney Harbour on Monday 4 April. Our annual sponsor exhibition returns with a terrific mix of ideas, products and services.

Location and venue: The Conference will unfold at the Marriott Hotel on Pitt Street, adjacent to Sydney’s bustling Circular Quay ferry terminals, only a few minutes’ walk to the historic Rocks District, the iconic Sydney Opera House and the Museum of Contemporary Art. Within a short pleasant walk you will also find the best that a re-opened Sydney CBD has to offer: the best shopping in New South Wales, the glorious Botanic Gardens in early autumn splendour, the dynamic new Barangaroo redevelopments, the Art Gallery of NSW, a re-modelled Australian Museum, the State Library, Sydney Theatre Company at the Wharf and world-famous restaurants.

Do you wish to present? CCA has opened expressions of interest to present at the Conference. We particularly welcome proposals that fit into the conference theme and strands (see below). Download the “Call for Papers” here or read more here.

Supporters, sponsors and services: CCA invites proposals to participate in our popular services and products exhibition, which “sells out” of available space every time. Please be quick if you wish to sponsor or support the 2022 Conference.

Contact us: Contact CCA via email if you have any questions.


Not-for-profit adult and community education (ACE) organisations

  • CEOs and other senior managers
  • VET managers and senior trainers
  • Boards of directors and volunteers
  • Marketing and promotions managers
  • Coordinators, planners, project managers, liaison officers and outreach specialists

Government, researchers and other organisations

  • Policy-makers working in post-secondary and secondary education roles for Commonwealth, state or territory governments who seek a deeper understanding of our sector’s challenges, opportunities and possibilities
  • Researchers in education and training who are keen to share their findings with one of the most engaged conference audiences in Australia
  • Consultants working in VET, universities, life-long learning, the future of work and the demand for skills in the next decade of the 21st century
  • Thinkers, thought-leaders, journalists and others engaging with the breaking trends of Australian post-secondary education and training
  • Teachers, trainers and educators seeking a strong dose of intellectual stimulation and the cutting edge of community education practices
  • Not-for-profit organisations that work with ACE providers and support our learners
  • International guests looking to understand of Australian post-secondary education and training, and who wish to engage with Australian experts and practitioners
  • Regional economic development and local government personnel working on the intersection between education, training, industry policy and economic development


The 2022 Conference will examine how to make Australian ACE and vocational education (VET) stronger, more focussed and attentive to learner needs, We will look at how to expand possibilities in education, training and other services to small businesses and to learners from lower socio-economic backgrounds, people with disabilities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, young people, regional and rural residents, migrants, refugees and those with limited English language skills, and people who face mental health challenges.

Foundation skills – language, literacy, numeracy and digital skills

In light of the soon-to-be-released national Foundation Skills Framework, CCA’s National ACE Summit resolutions, and recognition of new trends in digital transformation and remote learning. The ACE sector plays a fundamental role in opening up life and work possibilities for people from all walks of life. The conference will be a great opportunity to explore and share new and developing ideas and approaches in communicating, teaching and learning for practitioners, leaders and policy makers.

Aged care and disability care workforce training

Given the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aged Care, the planned major increased training of aged care workers and CCA’s June 2021 National ACE Summit. ACE providers punch above their weight in delivering effectively to the sector; the 2022 Conference will concentrate on building this capacity, focussing on innovation and the sharing of insights from industry researchers and service providers, and on practical strategies that add depth and breadth to the aged care and disability workforces, including trainer capacity.

Community development

While place-based learning constitutes the core business of Australian ACE providers, their activities extend well beyond the classroom. The ACE sector provides numerous opportunities for engagement in community life, learning and work, and supports the maintenance of Australian civil society and democracy, civic participation and building “social capital”. These functions are especially important in regional, rural and outer metropolitan locations where local educational institutions are part of the “glue” that holds communities together. The Conference will examine how the ACE sector – and Australian VET more broadly – can increase its participation in and collaboration with new ventures such as social enterprises, education precincts, entrepreneurship and social impact studies.

Leadership and governance

The Conference aims to expand skills in strategic planning, managing board dynamics, developing new business models, leading high-performance teams, coaching and mentoring, strategic finance, fundraising and funding diversification, responding to adversity, managing risk and change management. New skills will assist ACE organisations to face unprecedented levels of uncertainty resulting from COVID-19, including meeting government contracts, highly fatigued staff and trainer expertise in short supply. We also need new strategies to engage disadvantaged students, who have been the first to leave training in times of stress and the last to return, and who are often unable or unwilling to transfer to online and remote learning.


“All sessions were interesting and engaging.”

“This year was my first time at the CCA conference and I was impressed and surprised by the variety in workshops and exhibitors.”

“Thanks, team CCA – one of my favourite CCA conferences, if not my favourite.”

“Overall, I was exhausted by the end of the conference from the packed agenda and relevance of the content. There was nothing I wanted to miss. It was great!”

“Rich topics, engaging speakers, great venue.”

“Thank you so much for all of your hard work, great conference!”

“It was a great conference all round- thanks. So well organised! A great combination of serious, interesting, fun, inspirational and useful.”

“Conference very beneficial and a good learning environment.”

“Thank you for your dedication and effort in putting together an interesting and relevant program.”

“Excellent mix of main sessions and workshops.”

“Nice balance of governance, stats, policy, HR, practicality and inspiration.”

“Well-structured and delivered.”


Read about our recent conferences in Brisbane (2019), Sydney (2018), Melbourne (2017).


Use the Conference tag #CCASydney2022


The Marriott Hotel is located in the bustling heart of the Sydney CBD, within short walking distance to Circular Quay and many of the harbour city’s attractions.

The CCA Conference will take place on Level 2, where attendees can transition easily between conference events and break-out areas.



The Sydney Marriott Hotel is located at 30 Pitt St, Sydney NSW 2000.


Parking is available onsite at the Hotel (subject to availability) at a rate of $59 per day. Wilson Parking has locations nearby at:
37 Pitt Street
Gateway Car Park
20 Bond Street
Grosvenor Place

Public Transport

The hotel is within easy walking distance to bus, train and ferry connections. Bus: The nearest bus station is at Circular Quay. Alight in Loftus St and walk through Reiby Pl to Pitt St. Train and Ferry: Alight at Circular Quay and walk down Pitt St just past Reiby Pl. The hotel is on the left-hand side.


Do you want to speak at the Community Colleges Australia Annual Conference in April?

Community Colleges Australia (CCA) is putting together its 2022 conference program, which will take place at Sydney’s Marriott Hotel on 5-6 April.

  • Do you have any ideas worth sharing with Australia’s most accomplished adult and community educators?
  • Have you recently completed an educational project worthy of wider dissemination?
  • Have you developed or implemented any innovative approaches to training, post-secondary education or community services?
  • Have you watched and monitored Australia’s educational landscape and come to conclusions that others should hear about?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, we would like to hear from you.

We are looking for engaging, educative and inspiring presentations and ideas that will engage our conference participants, who come from all around Australia and possibly (pandemic-permitting) overseas.

We are particularly interested in presentations that deal with the conference theme of Rebuilding Community for Australia’s not-for-profit adult and community education (ACE) sector, in the light of Australia’s educational, economic and social emergence from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. All presentation ideas will be considered if they are suitable for our audience of adult and community education (ACE) leaders, government policy makers, consultants, researchers and other VET leaders. We seek presentations that:

  • complement or support the conference streams of aged care and disability care workforce training; foundation skills – language, literacy, numeracy and digital skills; community development; and leadership and governance
  • present new, unique and challenging perspectives on skills development, and vocational education and training
  • provide valuable historical, political, policy, economic or social context to our “current moment” of post-secondary education and our lives in rebuilding community and skills following the COVID-19 pandemic
  • present case studies of “things that work” in community education, skills or not-for-profit community services
  • could be presented in a “workshop” format that allows participants to develop new skills, insights and understandings
  • provide unique and stimulating perspectives on current issues
  • encourage engagement and fun

This is the moment to be creative. The CCA Conference is not bound by academic or other “rules” of what a conference presentation or workshop should look or feel like.

If you have an idea, let us know. Ideally, soon.

The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can confirm if your presentation fits.

Want to know more? Go to CCA’s 2022 Conference website or the Call for Papers (Word document download). Fill in the document and send it to us no later than 21 January 2022.

Have any questions? Email us.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Don Perlgut, PhD

CEO, Community Colleges Australia


CCA is confirming a stimulating group of conference speakers and workshops. Please contact us if you would like to offer a presentation.


  • The Hon Dr Geoff Lee MP, NSW Minister for Skills & Higher Education
  • Tim Crakanthorp MP, NSW Shadow Minister for Skills & TAFE, Shadow Minister for Tertiary Education
  • The Hon Stuart Robert MP, Minister for Employment, Workforce, Skills, Small and Family Business
  • The Hon Richard Marles MP, Deputy Leader of the Australian Labor Party, and Shadow Minister for National Reconstruction, Employment, Skills and Small Business


  • Dr Cassandra Goldie, CEO of Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) and Adjunct Professor, UNSW Sydney
  • Professor David Wilmoth, former RMIT Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Dean of Environmental Design & Construction; author of The Promise of the City: Adventures in Learning Cities and Higher Education (2021)
  • Mary Faraone, World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics (WFCP) Board member, Chair of TAFE Directors Australia and CEO of Holmesglen Institute (VIC), speaking on WFCP report Global Statement on the Future of Professional Technical Education and Training
  • The Past, Present and Future of Australian Adult and Community Education, with Nicole Battle, CEO of Neighbourhood Houses Victoria & President of Australian Neighbourhood House and Centres Association (ANHCA); Kylie Fergusen, CEO of Community Centres SA; Dr Don Perlgut, CEO Community Colleges Australia; and others
  • Foundation Skills, with Dave Tout, Senior Research Fellow, Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER); Dr Keiko Yasukawa, University of Technology Sydney (UTS); Vanessa Iles, Manager, The Reading Writing Hotline; Jo Medlin, President, Australian Council for Adult Literacy (ACAL); and others
  • Aged Care Workforce Training
  • Digital Inclusion


Speaker information will be announced soon.












Early Bird registration will be available soon.













Gold Supporters

Silver Supporters

The Community Colleges Australia (CCA) Annual Conference is the premier event for Australia’s adult and community education (ACE) providers. Our program of inspirational speakers, education and training experts, facilitated workshops and networking provides an unparalleled business opportunity for sponsors and supporters to reach Australia’s dynamic ACE providers through an interactive exhibition and social events.

Our supporters form a vital part of our conference, and are welcomed by attendees as colleagues and partners. The smaller, more intimate setting of a CCA conference invites in depth discussions and deeper relationships between delegate and supporter. In fact, many of our returning supporters are greeted as old friends.

As a supporter, you will receive acknowledgement prior to, during and after the conference through conference materials, the conference app, CCA’s website and email announcements.

You will enjoy significant and extended contact with delegates during the conference and social events – at every morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea-time.
Attendance at the Welcome Drinks and Gala Dinner is encouraged, where you can mingle with delegates in a more relaxed setting.


CCA is pleased to offer support options at three levels: Gold, Silver and Bronze, with special one-off opportunities for supporting the Conference Opening/ Welcome Drinks, and CCA 2022 Gala Dinner.

We can specifically tailor supporter packages to suit your needs. Please download our Supporter Opportunities Brochure or contact CCA to discuss supporter options.










CCA Announces April 2022 Conference in Sydney

Community Colleges Australia (CCA) Annual Conference returns to Sydney for an in-person event on 5 & 6 April 2022, promising a stimulating, inventive and invigorating two days of domestic and international speakers, expert presenters and adult and community education specialists. This will be CCA’s first in-person conference since its successful event in Brisbane in November 2019. This year’s conference theme Continue Reading