JOB'S RIGHT: Albury's Gill Mitchell has gone onto further studying after building her confidence in a unique TAFE NSW hospitality course.
A group of Albury jobseekers has learned the fine art of coffee-making as part of a unique course aimed at building their confidence and employment prospects.
The nine students, from a diverse range of backgrounds and ages, have just completed the Skill Set in Espresso Machine Operations at TAFE NSW Albury, a five-week course including units in coffee-making operations, hygiene, financial transactions and customer service.
It comes as a recent Deloitte Access Economics report identified hospitality as a “super-growth” industry nationally, with a report by Deloitte Access Economics projecting a 123,000-worker shortage by 2020.
Students enrolled in the course were either long-term unemployed or were developing their numeracy and literacy skills.
TAFE NSW Albury hospitality teacher Jason Marshall, a 30-year industry veteran, said two of the eight students had already secured employment from the course, while another four had gone on to further study in hospitality at TAFE NSW.
“It was absolutely amazing watching their confidence and skills grow during the course,” Mr Marshall said.
“It really is such a huge growth industry. When I started in the industry many years ago, there were only two coffee machines in all of Queensland.
“These days, every pub, club and café has a machine and Australia boasts some of the best coffee in the world.”
He said while the quality of the machine and the coffee beans were critical to a good cup, the barista still played a significant role in the end product.
For student Gill Mitchell, 37, the course was like a “caffeine jolt” to her career prospects.
“I’ve been caring for my children most of my adult life and I thought it was time to try and get a job,” Ms Mitchell said. “The course was a real eye-opener and taught me the skills you need to work in a fast-paced coffee shop. I felt myself improving so much and the teacher Jason was fantastic, he has so much industry experience.”
Ms Mitchell has gone on to further study at TAFE NSW Albury, and is now enrolled in a Certificate III in Hospitality. She hopes to gain employment in a coffee shop or hotel upon graduation.
To find out more about studying hospitality at TAFE NSW Albury, phone 13 16 01 or visit www.tafensw.edu.au.
Media contact: Daniel Johns, TAFE NSW Media and Communications – Business Partner, 6938 1441, mobile 0477 722 428.