The Andrews Labor Government honoured the outstanding achievements of vocational education and training students, teachers and the businesses who train them at the 65th Victorian Training Awards, with Seymour Health taking out Employer Award for Apprenticeship Development, Jodi Rechsteiner-Sanders from Seymour GoTAFE winning Teacher / Trainer of the Year and Rachael Hilder winning Vocational Student of the Year.

Now in their 65th year, the Victorian Training Awards recognise the outstanding achievements of organisations and individuals involved in vocational education and training across the state.

Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes congratulated Seymour Health, Jodi and Rachael for their contribution and dedication to excellence in training. They were among the 14 winners of the annual awards, dedicated to the state’s vocational education and training system.

Seymour Health has been servicing the community for nearly 100 Years. Today it responds to the changing health needs and aspirations of more than 14,000 people across the Shires of Mitchell, Murrindindi and Strathbogie.

Over the past 12 months, Seymour has established and consolidated continual improvements in the areas of governance, clinical governance and communication, warranting them a finalist at the Victorian Training Awards.

Seymour Health successfully secured funding for the redevelopment of the hospital’s Urgent Care Centre (UCC), which is a great outcome for one its highest volume services. This includes an innovative Nurse Practitioner (NP) model designed to provide weekend support to the Urgent Care Centre.

Seymour Health was also the proud recipient of the 2018 Premier’s Small Health Service of the Year award.

Rachael Hilder returned to education at age 48 after many years as a primary carer and parent.

After commencing on a Diploma of Community Services she realised she was drawn to areas relating to Justice and after completing a subsequent Diploma of Justice at Kangan Institute she now works as a Corrections Officer in remand protection at Ravenhall Correctional Centre. She was offered this role in August 2018 just two weeks after completing work placement.

Finishing both diplomas was a huge achievement for her and It proves that you’re never too old to start something new.

Training was never on Jodi’s radar as a career option, but later in life she realised it was a great opportunity to combine her skills as a qualified chef and her enjoyment of science amongst other subject areas.

She successfully applied with GOTAFE in 2009 to teach hospitality – both cookery and front of house operations. She has also delivered apprenticeship programs in cookery (both on and off campus); VET in Schools program (Certificate II level); school-based apprenticeships (in both cookery and Hospitality) and short courses in Food Handlers and Responsible Service of Alcohol.

Jodi has also taught the Victorian Certificate of Applied learning at all three levels (Foundation, Intermediate and Senior).

Winners were selected from 39 finalists, with the winners receiving $5,000 each in prize money. Winners from eligible categories will represent Victoria at the Australian Training Awards in Brisbane in November.

Since 2015, the Labor Government has invested more than $1.3 billion to rebuild our TAFE system and ensure students can get the skills they need for the jobs they want.

For more information on the winners, visit

Quotes attributable to Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes

“The Victorian Training Awards highlight the best-of-the-best in our TAFE and training sector and celebrate Victoria’s outstanding apprentices, trainees, students, employers, teachers and training providers.”

“Victoria is leading the way nationally in delivering a high-quality training and TAFE system, giving all Victorians the opportunity to develop the skills they need for the jobs they want and our state needs.”

“Jodi, Rachael and Seymour Health have made a significant contribution to vocational education and training and I congratulate them on their outstanding achievement.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Training and Skills and Higher Education Gayle Tierney

“The awards set the standards for vocational education and training in Victoria for employers, training providers, teachers and students and brings together stakeholders from industry and training organisations to help strengthen partnerships and encourage collaboration.”