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So you want to go to uni?

January 29, 2014

It’s impossible to unpick all the factors that determine whether a person does or does not make it to university. Yet despite the meritocracy mantras, the biggest determiners of what kind of education you are going to get remain: parent’s educational level and class. A private school education also helps.

For many people, like the students in the Tertiary Preparation Course I teach at Sydney Institute TAFE, that’s not what the lottery of life has served them up. And so, their education does not follow the usual trajectory. The path is filled with obstacles and interruptions. It almost defies reason (or at least the logic of the market) that many of them make it to university. At least the Tertiary Prep Course smooths out the arduous journey.

Meet one of my reason-defying students, Lauren:

And before you think this is a post filled with the usual cliches about the transformative powers of education, watch the video to hear what Lauren has to say about it.

Courses like this one can cost up to $30,000 a year at private colleges that operate nearby. Yes, exactly: who can afford that?? For now, the TPC program at TAFE is offered at a nominal fee for many students (with the fee refunded upon completion). While the reasons that this course and others like it are under threat are complex (more on the dismantling of TAFE and attacks on second chance education here), the course is being offered again this year. In fact, TAFE are enrolling students for first semester today and tomorrow (and will be accepting late enrolments next week once classes kick off). Find out more about that here (Ultimo campus).

And because not all of the funding invested in public education has been siphoned into the expanding marketing sections that are mandatory these days in educational institutions, I’d really appreciate if you shared this post so that my next batch of ‘Laurens’ find their way into my class.

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 30, 2014 1:32 am

    Great post. Cool video. Gutting TAFE and replacing it with for-profit providers with high fees dubious records on quality is not the way forward. We can’t forget about TAFE

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