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Local TAFE NSW Diploma of Applied Commerce student Leandro Bertero is today $2,400 closer to his career goal of becoming a Newcastle-based accountant, thanks to the Bean Counters Higher Education Scholarship.

The win was applauded by more than 70 industry and community representatives at this morning’s 2019 Hunter TAFE Foundation Semester One Awards and Scholarships presentation at TAFE NSW Kurri Kurri.

Also applauded was the winner of the Bean Counters Achievement Award, Renda Mruwey, who is studying a Certificate IV in Accounting or Bookkeeping at TAFE NSW Newcastle. She received $500.

A Lakelands resident, Argentinian-born Mr Bertero said, “In 2016 I met my partner while travelling Australia and we soon moved to New Zealand to apply for me to live in Australia permanently. While there I began to prepare for pursuing a new career, such as sitting my International English Language Testing System exam.”

“Towards the end of 2018 my visa was granted and on our return we decided to move in with my in-laws while we established our lives and careers in Newcastle. I am many years out of my teens, a full-time student and living with my in-laws… can you imagine!

“The scholarship money will be used wisely, put towards my semester two enrolment at TAFE NSW Newcastle. I am committed to establishing myself in a new career and understand this requires a recognised qualification.

“After I complete my Diploma of Applied Commerce it is my intention to continue to university in 2020 to complete a Bachelor Degree in Commerce.”

Mr Bertero is celebrating another recent win, having just secured an accounts payable role after door-knocking ‘almost every local accounting firm’. He begins in the coming weeks.

Bean Counters Ball Chair Bernadette Smyth said, “We are honoured to present this scholarship to Leandro to help him on his way to achieving his accounting qualifications. We were very impressed with his determination and diligence and look forward to seeing what he achieves in his career.”

Hunter TAFE Foundation president Gary Webb said, “Leandro stood out amongst a competitive group of applicants for this scholarship. We were highly impressed with his quest to overcome adversity to pursue his new career path and become a valuable member of the Hunter community.”

“I congratulate both Leandro and Bean Counters Achievement Award Renda for their commitment to their studies and encourage them to continue to strive for excellence.”

Leandro’s TAFE NSW teacher, Penny Newson, said, “Leandro’s behaviour is exceptional and his attitude to work is outstanding. He is always diligent in working to deadlines and expert at self-monitoring to achieve goals in a set timeframe. This is a highly valuable skill that any employer would look for.”

“Leandro is focused on success in his chosen career, having put in place effective strategies for learning. He works extremely hard and has achieved high marks for all four subjects this semester. He also has exceptional interpersonal skills, is popular with colleagues and is always willing to support others in their studies.”

The Bean Counters Higher Education Scholarship and Bean Counters Achievement Award were established by the Bean Counters Ball Committee and the Hunter TAFE Foundation, using funds raised at the Bean Counters Ball. They offer support and encouragement to promising students currently enrolled in the Associate Degree of Accounting or Diploma of Applied Commerce (Higher Education Scholarship), or the Certificate IV in Accounting (Achievement Award) at TAFE NSW Newcastle or Ourimbah.

Established in 2000, the Hunter TAFE Foundation is a not-for-profit charitable organisation working with business, education and community leaders committed to supporting education and training at TAFE NSW by helping students achieve their goals. Last financial year it presented over $75,000 in awards and scholarships.

Australia’s largest training provider, TAFE NSW offers over 1200 courses, from certificates to degrees. Many can be studied online via TAFE Digital, when and where it suits. Visit or call 131 601.