The College of Business has celebrated its Cooperative Education Program and recognised its many industry partners at a gala event.
Organised by the Industry Engagement and Work Integrated Learning team, the annual event brought together more than 220 long-term industry supporters, students, staff and alumni.
The Cooperative Education Program is one of the best examples of Work Integrated Learning (WIL) offered by RMIT.
The program allows business students enrolled in four-year undergraduate degrees to obtain a year of work experience during their third year of study, which is invaluable when competing in the job market.
The MC for the evening was Caryl Hertz, Senior Manager, Industry Engagement and Work Integrated Learning, and the opening address was delivered by Professor Aaron Smith, Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor, Industry Engagement.
Professor Smith thanked RMIT’s many business partners for their continuing support of cooperative education.
“The power of the program lies with how it addresses the question of how we can prepare students for a world changing faster than our capacity to update their knowledge,” he said.
“The answer resides with a program that shifts the emphasis from a focus on what you know, to one of how to know.
“Universities equip students with knowledge but only experience can transform that knowledge into sustainable expertise.”
The keynote speaker was Gerhard Vorster, Chief Strategy Officer, Deloitte Australia and Asia-Pacific region, and Adjunct Professor and Chair of RMIT’s College of Business Advisory Board.
Adjunct Professor Vorster, a business thought leader who has worked internationally with Deloitte for more than 27 years, engaged guests with an informative presentation on the innovative aspects of RMIT’s WIL program.
“Disruption is real in higher education,” he said.
“People learn in different ways and it is our collective responsibility to create optimal conditions for work integrated learning as much as it is to create such for the university side of the student experience.
“This requires a systematic management system that could be scaled and maintained.”
The College of Business has had a longstanding partnership with Deloitte through the ongoing RMIT Fastrack Program.
The event, held on the 35th floor of the Sofitel Melbourne, concluded with a panel discussion led by RMIT’s Entrepreneur in Residence Marcus Powe, featuring Amber Kristof, an employer representative from L’Oréal, and Mario Matchado, a former cooperative education student.
Mr Matchado, Brand Manager with Lion Dairy and Drinks, spoke about how his internship and subsequent career with L’Oréal gave him invaluable workplace experience, leading to an international marketing career in brand management.
The following student awards were also presented at the event:
- School of Economics, Finance and Marketing Cooperative Education Award for Best Research Report, Economics and Finance - Elizabeth Graham
- School of Economics, Finance and Marketing Cooperative Education Award for Best Research Report, Marketing - Emma Bradley
- School of Business IT and Logistics Cooperative Education Award for Best Research Report, Business Information Systems - Fahranita Eltari
- School of Accounting Cooperative Education Award for Best Research Report, Accounting - Daniel Kelly
- School of Business IT and Logistics Cooperative Education Award for Best Research Report, Logistics and Supply Chain Management - Dillon Singh
- School of Management Cooperative Education Award for Best Research Report, International Business - Hannah Micich