It’s great to be back at Grafton TAFE.  I grew up in rural Victoria, and coming back to this regional town full of clear blue skies, empty paddocks, and beautiful green vistas truly nurtures my soul.

This year’s student group are a positive, enthusiastic bunch, with that distinctive laconic, laidback country town feel.

Teaching and studying rurally creates it’s own set of differences and challenges. Students travel from far and wide e.g. Iluka,Wooli, Nana Glen, and Bellingen.  A fair bit of brainstorming occurs in car pools!  Flooding seems to be the only deterrent to attendance – in 2009 students from Coffs Harbour travelling via the Pacific Highway were cut off three times.

One of the simple pleasures in the teaching day is to see students’ rushes.  Time after time a student will show another perfect location for filming – whether it be the natural beauty or the relics of abandoned industry.  2011 should be no exception… 

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