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New leader takes the reins at SWTAFE’s Hamilton campus

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HAMILTON’S new South West TAFE campus leader Ursula Murphy is aiming to build on the region’s already strong educational offering.

“Hamilton does education really well. We have exceptional schools here and we want to make sure that we can offer students a fantastic option to stay here and continue their studies,” she said.

Mrs Murphy said she was extremely excited to be taking on this new role, eager to encourage students to stay local to further their education with South West TAFE.

“Moving away to study doesn’t suit everyone and it can be really tough on the students and their families. We want to make sure they know we provide qualifications here that can give students a stepping stone into university and employment,” she said.

Working closely with local industry and educational providers to find out what their needs are is also a focus for the new campus leader.

“We have so many dynamic industries in this region and we need to find out what training and qualifications they require so we can work together to provided them here” Mrs Murphy said.

She said another focus in her new role would be to work closely with other local training providers so they could all work together to meet the needs of the community.

“We want to make sure we focus on the students and provide pathways and courses to get the best outcome for each individual,” she said.

Mrs Murphy has a background in teaching which has even lead her to teaching in China. 

Originally from Woolsthorpe, Mrs Murphy gained a science degree from The University of Melbourne and then went on to teach secondary school students including year 11 and 12 biology, maths and science.

She also spent 12 months teaching English in China where she was able to learn the local language herself.

More recently she has worked at both Monivae College and The Hamilton and Alexandra College where she was able to combine her love of teaching science and maths with teaching Chinese.

“I loved the creativity that came with teaching LOTE. You can have so much fun with it and it was a nice balance to my maths and science classes,” she said.

Mrs Murphy has held many leadership roles at these schools and is bringing this experience into her new role at South West TAFE.

South West TAFE CEO Mark Fidge said it was exciting to have Mrs Murphy on board leading the Hamilton campus.

“She is well known to the Hamilton community from her teaching positions and has such a passion for education which will benefit the entire Hamilton community,” he said.