Australia (University of Newcastle Australia) Students, Staff and Industry Shine at University Employability Excellence Awards Thursday, 10 November 2022

Innovative thinkers, Google interns and local businesses going above and beyond to give students exceptional workplace experiences have all been celebrated at the University of Newcastle’s 2022 Employability Excellence Awards.

The awards celebrate the achievements of students and the work of staff and industry partners in preparing life-ready graduates, through Work Integrated Learning (WIL) experiences, or professional placements.

Deputy Vice Chancellor, Professor Mark Hoffman explained the awards reflect the university’s increased focus on providing students with practical experience as part of their degrees.

“Our University is committed to creating graduates who are equipped with the skills to succeed. Work Integrated Learning provides students with real, on the job experience that helps to them to develop skills that prepare them not only for their future workplace, but also for life after they graduate.”

“Last year over 30,000 practical learning experiences were undertaken by students. The most employable graduates develop a portfolio of experiences that demonstrate essential workplace skills that build on the knowledge of their degree.

“We understand that these skills are often learnt away from the classroom and beyond textbooks, which is why WIL is so important.”

This year awards recognised eight students who have excelled in their placement, five university staff and 13 businesses who have helped students to have an impactful practical work placement experience.

Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alex Zelinsky AO explained the importance of recognising the impact of staff and businesses in the awards.

“A Work Integrated Learning experience can give students meaningful, first-hand experience in their chosen field to help them get a taste of their future career and understand the areas that they enjoy the most.

“As a University that is committed to our region, we also recognise the contributions of businesses who take on students.

“For businesses, taking on a student not only gives them practical experience, it creates a pipeline of future talent, helping businesses to identify high quality graduates and attract and retain students before they graduate.

“We also recognise that our staff play an integral role in helping to create and facilitate these experiences for students and I thank them for this commitment and dedication.”

See the full list of winners here.