‘Learning by doing’ is part of Swinburne University of Technology’s guarantee to provide our learners with industry experience. This commitment to merge the world of study and work extends to our Vocational Education and Training (VET) students.
This year, students from Swinburne’s Diploma of Information Technology (Front End Web Development) and Diploma of Information Technology (Advanced Programming) are collaborating to create websites for two not-for-profit organisations.
The Boroondara Stroke Support Group needs a completely redesigned and completed website. The new website will feature a calendar that can be dynamically updated by its members with weekly events. This is currently a time-consuming, inefficient task that Swinburne programming students will be streamlining.
The second project is a website for EdAble, which supports micro businesses for people with disabilities and advocates for the employment of this group in medium and large businesses. The students will set up a complex system that enables people to donate money for specific items required by the micro businesses.
Graham Bridge, ICT Course Coordinator at Swinburne, says students are being trained to take the tech jobs of tomorrow, today.
“Workplaces are looking for innovative solutions to the problems they’re experiencing, as well as the talent required for a future defined by technology,” says Bridge.
“These projects allow our students to showcase their industry training in creating modern, updatable, dynamic websites for the benefit of community organisations.”
Olga Lavouasier, Manager ICT (VET) at Swinburne is working with students and their teachers to have the finished websites handed over to the respective clients in late November.
“All our ICT courses have embedded industry immersion and live projects where possible,” says Lavouasier.
“Each course has several industry partners attached to it to deliver workshops, presentations and to act as a community of practice for our students to access as mentors.”
Previously, Diploma of Digital Media Technology students redesigned a website for Kara Family Violence Service (formerly Kara House) aimed at potential donors, volunteers and people in potentially abusive relationships.
Ruby Lampard, Development Officer at Kara Family Violence Service, says the involvement of Swinburne’s ICT students was vital.
“It was wonderful to work with the Swinburne students to totally redevelop our very out-of-date website,” says Lampard.
“Right from the initial brief the students were on board and engaged in understanding how much a new website could make a difference in the lives of women and children facing family violence.
“They developed innovative solutions that met the brief, a standout design, coded the site from scratch and were incredibly professional throughout the whole process. The design, functionality and ease of use was beyond our expectations.
“The project gave us the opportunity to collaborate with a team of students whose skill set enabled the development of a website that has played a pivotal role in communicating to clients, community sponsors and industry colleagues and, most importantly, helping our clients move toward a safer future.”