Students go back to the future at Navitas Professional, Darwin
Navitas Professional Darwin is the first campus to open its doors to students for face-to-face learning one year after COVID-19 sent classes online.
Staff and students were excited to finally meet each other onsite on Wednesday at Darwin Innovation Hub, where Navitas Professional recently relocated to access state-of-the-art teaching and learning facilities.
About 20 Professional Year Program (PYP) students, made up of IT and accounting graduates, mingled over a breakfast provided by the college before settling into their first class with trainer Kimmi Smellin.
“The students had never been in the same room together, so it felt like they were meeting each other for the first time,” said Kimmi, who is also Trainer Team Leader – North Western.
“This class in particular kept asking, ‘When are we going to be able to go back to face-to-face learning?’ Most of them had also done the final semester of their university degree online before joining us, so they were really ready.
“I think face-to-face learning is especially important for international students. Many are isolated at home and for some it is quite daunting to face another term online.
“This helps with everything – practising English, socialisation and mixing with other cultures.”
Territory Operations Manager Robyn Connell said it was great to see engaged and enthusiastic students together at the new campus, where the college relocated late last year to take advantage of more modern facilities, better transport links and closer proximity to host companies. And the students made the most of the central CBD location, heading out at lunch time to “buy local” and support the wider community.
Despite the NT’s excellent track record on COVID-19, Robyn said safety was still the highest priority at the campus, with training, the Territory check-in app, a dedicated COVID station in the classroom, hand sanitiser and wipes and extra cleaning of furniture and equipment.
The students were officially welcomed back over Zoom by General Manager Lynette Harris and National Business Manager Heather Roberts, who are hopeful to see more Navitas Professional campuses returning to face-to-face learning across Australia in the coming months.
The Navitas Professional Year Program is a professional development program that combines formal learning and an Australian internship placement, with 80 percent of graduates gaining employment within six months of completing their course.
Navitas Professional is the only provider able to offer the Australian Computer Society (ACS) Professional Year Program, Engineers Australia’s Professional Year in Engineering and Accounting Professional Year Program nationwide.
The program gives international graduates the skills to gain employment and excel in their chosen field. Successful completion provides eligibility for migration points towards permanent residency.
For more information: https://www.navitas-professional.edu.au/