Barkly celebrates strong academic year 

Group - Graduands and staff gather at the CDU presentation ceremony in Tennant Creek

The Charles Darwin University’s Barkly community celebrated a year of achievement with 32 graduands receiving certificates at the sixth annual presentation evening in Tennant Creek this week.

Centre Leader Kate Young congratulated families and friends for their ongoing support of students who had worked hard to develop their skills and increase their knowledge.

“It was another year of great activity across a broad spectrum of courses and study interests for a growing number of people in the region,” Ms Young said.

“The learning journey can be a lonely one at times so it is vital that students, whether they’re young or mature-aged, can draw strength and encouragement from those close to them.”

Ms Young paid tribute to the Hawke family (Allan, Julie and son Wade) for the good example and positive attitude they showed towards their vocational studies through the year.

“This is a family who not only recognises that education is the way to get ahead but who also had the determination and resilience to push through until completion.

“Each of them successfully completed certificates in areas relevant to their employment and each of them has plans to continue further studies next year.”

Ms Young also noted members of another family – Debra Lyons, Colin Neilson and Rachel Frei – all of whom graduated on Wednesday night.

“This is a first for Tennant Creek with three generations from the one family graduating at the same time.”

Debra and Colin both hold a Diploma of Management while Debra’s grand-daughter Rachel received a Certificate I in Hospitality.

Ms Young also congratulated distance learner Benita Bauer, the first Barkly-region recipient of a CDU Aspire travel scholarship. Benita, who is studying for a Senior School Certificate from her home on remote Brunchilly Station, received the grant in recognition of her commitment to studies and her potential for leadership and tertiary education.

Ms Young said visiting lecturers from Darwin, Alice Springs and Katherine had provided tremendous support for the three-local staff.

“At a local level we deliver courses in training and assessment, and business, but visiting staff allow us to offer much more.

“The month of October was particularly active with 13 visiting staff delivering training in art, literacy, construction, sport, agriculture and much more.”

Ms Young thanked commercial cookery lecturer Ingolf Eigenwillig, who for the past 10 years had delivered hospitality courses to high school students through the Vocational Educational and Training in Schools program.

“He is also one of a number of lecturers to deliver courses at the Barkly Work Camp, where next year we expect to continue developing the strong partnership that has grown during the past two years.”