Cassie Bartels, Vocational Education and Training (VET) and External Pathways Coordinator at Bethany College Hurstville has clinched the gold. 

She recently won Education Partner of the Year – Sydney Catholic Schools at the prestigious Partners in Excellence Awards, for outstanding contributions to VET work placement programs for our students across South-East Sydney.

Cassie’s approach is marked by meticulous preparation, ensuring her students thrive with the skills and confidence needed for successful work placements and post-school achievement in the workforce.

Like many educators across the Sydney Catholic Schools (SCS) system, her journey into education follows a non-traditional path, uncovering a passion for teaching through extensive industry experience. 

Cassie brings a wealth of practical knowledge from her background in hospitality, with roles in various cafes and restaurants adding a flavourful twist to her teaching style. She relishes the opportunity to share her own stories and experiences, which VET students can directly relate to. 

“I aim to prepare students for their chosen pathways by providing them with real-life scenarios and practical skills. Work placement is a transformative experience for many students, offering them a unique glimpse into their desired industries,” Miss Bartels said. 

Cassie oversees three VET subjects at Bethany College including Business Services, Hospitality and Entertainment. 

Alongside supporting work placements, she also facilitates a range of additional VET courses available across the system through three SCS Trade Training Centres, and external partnerships such as TAFE NSW.

Bethany College’s VET programs reflect the wider offerings and programs available across the SCS system, providing students with state-of-the-art facilities and hands-on experiences.

“Our programs offer students not just experience that looks fantastic on a resume, but more importantly qualifications alongside their HSC. 

“While on their work placement, some students receive job offers to start part-time or post-graduation. This largely due to the experience they’ve gained in the classroom and through our system’s strong industry connections,” Miss Bartels said.

Education Officer – Vocational Education at SCS, Mary Bancks explains that VET programs across SCS are tailored to meet individual student needs, offering flexibility in scheduling and a range of programs in different fields at various levels of complexity.

“Educators like Cassie facilitate our high-quality vocational education and training programs, empowering students to pursue their career aspirations and achieve their goals.”

“The success of SCS VET offerings continues to be reflected in outstanding HSC results, with students placing in the top three of the state across various subjects for two consecutive years,” Mrs Bancks said.

The future looks bright for Bethany College under the guidance of educators like Cassie, whose dedication, experience, and passion set the gold standard for excellence in education.

Partners in Excellence Awards

Partners in Excellence is an annual event hosted by The Youth Partnership and dedicated to recognising and celebrating the exceptional achievements of local community educators including Cassie. 

Nominations take into consideration feedback received from work placement students, VET teachers through surveys, and a comprehensive selection criterion that recognises their overall contribution.