Monthly Archives: February 2016

Making change happen

St Patrick’s Technical College Scholarship Partner, BoysTown, is now yourtown – the new name and image coming into effect over the weekend. yourtown’s experience in helping disadvantaged young people find their place in the community through training, counselling and other support services, has seen a partnership in northern Adelaide with St Patrick’s Technical College naturally evolve over the past ten years.

During this time, our two organisations have assisted many young students on their pathway to employment and successful achievement of the SACE through the provision of scholarship places in a range of courses.

Among the young people to have benefited from this partnership was Hairdresser, Samantha Dougherty.  Her journey to employment through StPatsTech, aided by yourtown, was highlighted by multiple student awards in 2014, including the Max Davids Award for the College’s Apprentice of the Year.

The not-for-profit organisation’s new name, yourtown, better showcases the inclusiveness of their work and focus on community; both as a beneficiary of financial support and as a contributor to supporting young people.

yourtown’s decision to rename was not taken lightly, given all that they have achieved since beginning in 1961. But, much about yourtown has changed since that time; the services delivered, the help offered, and the interactions with young people have all evolved.  The new name and image better reflects the inclusive nature of their work – after all, they don’t just work with boys!

St Patrick’s Technical College is excited about the change. We are looking forward to growing the partnership with yourtown, creating brighter futures for young people across northern Adelaide.

St Patrick’s Technical College and yourtown – together, we can make change happen.

Cambodia Service Tour

Places on the inaugural StPatsTech Service Tour to Cambodia are all but filled and preparations now well underway for a July departure.  Around 10 students plus College staff will be making their way to Siem Reap, north-west Cambodia, to work with the Self Help Community Centre (SHCC), a non-government organisation that provides a safe environment for over 1500 disadvantaged children and young adults in the Kro Bei Riel community.

The StPatsTech team will assist in the development of sustainable initiatives and programs that educate and empower rural communities in becoming self-sufficient.  The projects will be worked on with school students from the SHCC school and are designed to support the entire community.

SR2Projects will include:

  • organic farming;
  • English lessons;
  • interacting with the orphan students through sport, art and craft; and
  • participating in various sustainability projects.

St Patrick’s Technical College has supported the SHCC for a number of years through our annual ‘Cans for Cambodia’ program and several staff members have previously visited the community.  In 2013 we were fortunate to have the founding member of the SHCC visit our College.

In addition to the project work that will be undertaken during the nine day program, students will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in local culture with visits to the Siem Reap night markets; the 12th century temple at Ta Prohm; and the spectacular Angkor Thom complex, including Phimeanakas Baphuon, the Terrace of the Elephants, the Terrace of the Leper King and the Bayon.

Staff and students will also learn basic basket weaving, take an oxcart ride through local farms and cook a traditional Khmer dish with produce bought at the Kro Bei Riel market.  They will explore the Merchrey Floating Village by boat and enjoy a show at the Cambodian Circus, founded in 1994 by 8 young Cambodians returning from refugee camps on the Thai border.

SR1Students will also discover the more recent history of Cambodia as they venture to Banteay Srey, for many years off limits due to Khmer Rouge activity, and visit the Land Mine Museum which recognises the tireless work of clearing land mines across the nation and helps children and families who have been affected by the land mines.

For more information about the Cambodia Service Tour, please contact College Coordinator, Mr Marc Forster.

Life in the fast lane

StPatsTech Year 11 Automotive student, Josh Denton, has been making quite an impact on the Australian junior Motorsport scene. Josh recently impressed in his first official testing for the CAMS Jayco Australian Formula 4 Championship at Sydney Motorsport Park.

20160202_112427Testing with the Championship Winning BRM team from South Australia, Josh was immediately comfortable in the car, setting very impressive times for his first test.

It was the first time Josh has driven around Sydney Motorsport Park and the first time he has been able to sample the full aero effects of these cars.

“It’s been really good so far. We went out for the first session, focusing on getting used to the car and my driving techniques, my lines, braking pressure and throttle application,” Denton said.

It was only a matter of laps before Josh took on the notorious first corner at full speed, surprising many.

“Rookie, Josh Denton, did a fantastic job in his first full day in the F4 car surprising quite a few people with his speed straight away,” reported team BRM.

“Today I think I’ve really improved in my driving,” a satisfied Denton commented at the end of the day. “I think my brake pressure is up a lot higher than it was previously. I’m getting used to the different driving techniques used in a F4 car as opposed to karts and made some positive changes to the car.”

Over the course of the day Josh worked on his driving technique and familiarity with the team providing team engineers with valuable feedback. Changes were made to the set-up of the car and Josh was able to immediately put them into effect.

BRM team manager, Mark Rundle was impressed by Josh’s first outing.

“Josh was extremely impressive in his first proper test day in the Formula 4. His fitness, ability to take what his engineers where teaching him and put it into practice in the car was well past the level of someone having their first day in the car. He was faster than a number of more experienced drivers and only around 4 tenths off the fastest time for the day. I am really looking forward to seeing how Josh progresses. He definitely has the potential to be a future star – no question,” commented Mark.

IMG_128Having shown his potential Josh is focused on training whilst budgets are finalised in readiness for the 2016 six-round championship which starts in Tasmania at Symmons Plains, 1-3 April.

Sponsorship Opportunity

For more information on how to support Josh in Formula 4 this year, please contact Craig Denton ( / 0419 718 672)

About Formula 4

The world of single-seater racing has undergone a radical shift with the introduction of the CAMS Jayco Australian Formula 4 Championship in 2015.

Formula 4 has been developed and certified by the FIA as the pre-eminent open-wheel development category across the globe; the critical step between elite junior karting, Formula 3 and ultimately Formula 1.

The over-arching aim of this category is to unearth the next generation of Australian drivers who will make it to the world stage.

F4_Pathway-1024x5351-1024x535What is Formula 4?

It is a developmental single seater open-wheel racing category for young drivers who are serious about a pathway to the top of motor sport.

It is based on the new FIA international regulations for Formula 4 with a focus on keeping costs down and guaranteeing the highest possible safety standards.

It’s built on four cornerstones: technical regulations, organisational standards, sporting regulations, and marketing and communications.

International Women’s Day 2016

At St Patrick’s Technical College we believe in making a difference and supporting women in need. On Tuesday 8 March, in support of International Women’s Day (IWD), the StPatsTech Year 12 Community Studies class will host our annual IWD Breakfast, now in its sixth year, celebrating the empowerment of women and the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women globally.

This year proceeds from our breakfast will support Essentials 4 Women SA – a South Australian foundation whose primary aim is to provide all women with the basic, but costly, items for feminine hygiene including sanitary products and underwear.

The event will include a quality breakfast prepared by our own team of trainee chefs and will feature guest speakers – successful women from the world of business and industry. We are expecting around 100 guests from across the northern Adelaide community.

Fundraising & Donations

We have been fortunate since the breakfast’s inception to enjoy generous support from many individuals and local businesses for the fundraising component of this event. If you are able to donate to our IWD fundraiser, you and/or your business will be recognised here on our College website, via our various social media channels, the next College e-newsletter and from the stage throughout the breakfast event.

Items that would be greatly appreciated could include:

  • InternationalWomensDay-portraitBreakfast food items (e.g. cereals, muesli, bread, eggs, bacon, etc.)
  • Drinks (e.g. juice, milk, etc.)
  • Tea / Coffee
  • Sanitary products
  • Hygiene products (e.g. deodorants, toothbrushes, toothpastes, soaps, face wash, etc.)
  • Underwear

The Year 12 Community Studies class will use the event as an assessment piece looking at organisation, catering and marketing. If you are able to assist with a donation please forward these to the College or contact Mrs Leah Baylis on or 0413 996 065.

Fighting Irish Cricket – 2016

Match #1 of the 2016 knock-out cricket season for StPatsTech was against Thomas More College today with very hot conditions prevailing.

sport160pxStPatsTech were in the field first and we were able to get a break through in the second over with William Earle dismissing one of their openers for a duck. Thomas More then took the initiative with two partnerships taking their score to 3 for 99. They were finally dismissed for 157 from 35 overs. Anthony Langhorn and Jack Hamilton were the best of the Fighting Irish bowlers with 2 wickets each

Unfortunately our batting performance was poor and we were only able to manage 75 runs. William Earle provided some resistance with a very well compiled 41 and was the shining light in a very disappointing batting display by the rest of the team.

Thomas More proved to be the better team on the day.

Thomas More 157 def. StPatsTech 75

Master plumbers in the making

One of St Patrick’s Technical College’s major partners when it comes to employing plumbing apprentices is the Master Plumbers Association of South Australia. As well as supporting the College’s programs and students through their group training scheme, the Master Plumbers were a supporter of our awards program in 2015. This partnership is producing great opportunities for students as we recently discovered.

master_plumbers_sa1_222x222Last week we were contacted by Steven Prisk, a Master Plumbers field officer, with an update about some St Patrick’s Technical College graduates he is currently working with.

Following last year’s Graduation Dinner, our Class of 2015 Student of the Year, Peter Stamatelopoulos, had been in contact with Steven regarding employment opportunities. This lead to work experience placements during the summer with Jordan Plumbing and Select 1 Plumbing – each resulting in outstanding reports from his supervisors.

These employer reports coupled with his performance at St Patrick’s during 2014-15 (where he was also named Plumbing Student of the Year) has now seen Peter signed with the Master Plumbers Association Group Training Scheme as a full-time first year plumbing apprentice, hosted by Select 1 Plumbing.

For Select 1 Plumbing and company owner, Darren West, the Master Plumbers Association, working with St Patrick’s Technical College, has become a significant pathway for his young apprentice workforce. In fact, all four of Select 1’s apprentices are graduates of St Patrick’s Technical College and employed through the Master Plumbers Association Group Training Scheme.

  • Peter Stamatelopoulos (’15) – 1st year apprentice
  • Lachlan Connelly (’15) – 1st year apprentice
  • Lucas Vittorelli (’13) – 2nd year apprentice
  • Matthew Turner (’11) – 3rd year apprentice

The adventure of a lifetime

St Patrick’s Technical College will be conducting its first Community Service Tour to Cambodia in July 2016. Students will be volunteering in a small community within Siem Reap, making a huge difference to the lives of children less fortunate than us. We will be assisting with the development of sustainable initiatives and programs that educate and empower these rural communities in establishing and securing a sustainable and self-sufficient future.

Your time volunteering in Siem Reap will also give you the opportunity to experience the wonderful culture of Cambodia and visit some of its amazing sites.

If you are interested in joining us for this Community Service tour and helping to make a difference please come along to our information night.

INFORMATION NIGHT – Thursday 18 February, 7pm | REGISTER HERE

If you would like any further information, please do not hesitate to contact College Coordinator, Mr Marc Forster at

Welcome to 2016

PTourWelcome to the 2016 school year at St Patrick’s Technical College – our tenth year of operations. The year ahead promises to be one of our most successful.

Our Year 11 and new Year 12 students began this week and there has been a smooth start for all. The students have undergone an induction and orientation program, with a mixture of training courses, employer and other information sessions.

We look forward to Monday for the start of the Academic year, with TAFE and College classes getting under way, and when all students will be together for the first time this year.

There was a very successful Year 12 Information Night held last Tuesday with guest speaker, Mr Ivan Neville, from the Department of Employment. This was an insightful session with useful information around employment trends and ways to maximise the chances of gaining an apprenticeship.

Next Wednesday is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of forty days of Lent. This period leading up to Easter is preceded by Shrove Tuesday. There will be a whole school liturgy on Wednesday morning with Elizabeth Parish Priest, Fr Pat Woods, to mark the beginning of this important time in our preparation for Easter.

I wish all members of our community all the very best for the year ahead and look forward to working with you.

Rob Thomas
College principal

Student Accident

Many in our College community would have heard of an accident involving a student yesterday afternoon on Winterslow Road. Thankfully, although potentially serious, the student only suffered minor injuries and is home recovering.

This raises the issue of student vigilance when crossing Winterslow Road on the way to and from the Elizabeth Transit Hub. Winterslow Road is very busy and students must take great care when crossing.

There is a designated crossing area directly in front of the College, and another across the road bridge adjacent to the Elizabeth TAFE campus, All students are expected to use one of these for safety reasons. Can you please reinforce this message with your son or daughter.

We have raised this traffic management matter with the City of Playford and they are committed to working with the College to bring about a solution which will enhance student safety.

Thank you to those parents who have rung or sent messages of support for the injured student.

Rob Thomas

JCB Academy UK Exchange


St Patrick’s Technical College and our UK partner school, The JCB Academy, are happy to announce that our Australia / UK Exchange program is back for 2016/17.  In September this year, we will be sending a group of StPatsTech students and staff to our partner University Technical College in Staffordshire, while in February 2017 we will welcome a group from the UK visiting us here in Adelaide.

The JCB Academy is a similar school to St Patrick’s Technical College.  Established in 2010 as part of the UK University Technical College program, the curriculum and learning techniques at the school allow students to combine theory and practical activities with a strong practical focus.

Like St Patrick’s, The JCB Academy has strong links with industry.  JCB, the world’s third-largest construction equipment manufacturer, is the College’s major backer.  Lead by JCB Group Chairman, Sir Anthony Bamford, local business leaders have shown significant support for this educational venture by providing equipment, expertise and engineering staff to assist College staff in the delivery of pre-apprenticeship and pre-tertiary Engineering courses.

Since 2012, staff from St Patrick’s Technical College have visited The JCB Academy to share information and expertise in the field of vocational education and training.  Many of the learnings from these experiences have been implemented here at Edinburgh North, while in Staffordshire our flexible approach to pre-apprenticeship programs has been adopted.

In 2014 a group of students and staff from St Patrick’s visited The JCB Academy on our inaugural exchange program which was reciprocated with a group from the UK visiting Adelaide in February 2015.

We are pleased to offer our 2016 Year 11 and 12 students the opportunity to participate in the next round of the exchange.


An Information Evening for students and their families wishing to learn more about this opportunity will be held at St Patrick’s Technical College on Thursday 18 February, 7-8pm.

REGISTER to attend using the on-line form, contact the College Administration on 8209 3700 during school hours, or email with the name of the interested student.


Where is The JCB Academy?

The JCB Academy is located in the village of Rocester, Staffordshire.  It is approximately 30km west of the city of Derby and 30km to the east of Stoke-on-Trent.  The exchange will fly into Manchester (approximately 100km north) as the nearest major airport.

When will the exchange take place?

We plan to leave on Friday 23 September and return to Adelaide on Monday 10 October.  This is the final week of term 3 and first week of the holidays.

How many students / staff will be going?

Two staff members will accompany a group of up to six students.

Where will students stay while on the exchange?

Students will be hosted by families with students attending The JCB Academy.  These families will be subject to an application and screening process conducted by the Academy with the successful students selected to visit Australia in February 2017.

How much will the exchange cost?

Based on the 2014 exchange, we estimate the cost at being $3000 – $3500.  This will include return airfares, accommodation, transfers, travel insurance and all planned activities.  It does not include spending money.

What sort of activities will students be involved in while on the exchange?

Students will join in regular Academy classes throughout the two weeks which may incorporate working on a joint project with their host students.  Students will visit a number of the Academy’s local industry partners, including JCB World Headquarters and Rolls Royce, as well as some local attractions including St George’s Park and a local pottery.  There will also be a number of social activities with host students, a weekend in London and a Premier League football match.  A detailed program will be discussed at the Information Evening in February.