In Summary

Swinburne University of Technology teacher Kate Herbert has been named a finalist for VET Teacher/ Trainer of the Year award at the 2015 Victorian Training Awards.

Kate, the Professional Writing and Editing Course Convenor, has been teaching at Swinburne for over four years and was nominated in recognition of her dedication to students.

Her passion for teaching writing and editing developed when she realised that every industry needs people who can write clearly and concisely.

“Writing is a necessary skill in so many different sectors and jobs. Whether it be writing in a business context, creating and drafting social media content or producing content for the web, writing is a fundamental skill that people need to have,” Kate said.

Kate said that the Professional Writing and Editing courses, which are taught as part of Swinburne’s Vocational Education offerings, had a diverse range of students.

“Students completing certificates or diplomas often come from a range of cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds and have varied learning abilities, which means that the teaching delivery must be tailored to suit the individual’s needs.

“I believe that it’s important to be flexible and adapt your teaching methods in order to connect with students.”

Kate also makes sure that industry exposure is part of the courses she teaches at Swinburne.

“Each year the students meet over twenty people working as writers, editors, publishers and copywriters. This helps to motivate them and build their career aspirations.”

Kate has spent many years in the theatre industry, where she wrote, directed and lectured in performing arts. She writes weekly theatre reviews for the Herald Sun and runs her own blog.

When asked what Kate enjoyed most about teaching, she said it was the ‘Ah Ha’ moment.

“When a student’s eyes light up for the first time and they finally get it, it makes it all worth it.”

The winners of the Victorian Training Awards will be announced during a presentation dinner on Friday 28 August.‌

Swinburne horticulture student, Chris Henbery, has also been named as finalist in the Victorian Training Awards in two categories including the inaugural Community Choice Award. Read more about Chris.