The Skill Engineer

2021 Annual Report

Acknowledgement of Country

The Skill Engineer (TSE) acknowledges and pays respect to the Traditional Owners and Custodians of Country throughout Australia.

We honour and respect the cultural heritage, customs and beliefs of all First Nations people. We recognise that First Nations peoples have spiritual, social and cultural connections with their traditional lands and waters. 

We look to the future with hope as we walk side by side with our First Nations people in the spirit of reconciliation and truth telling.

We work with young Australians, including First Nations youth and young people with a disability, to ensure they are supported to access vocational employment and training opportunities, with the aim of advancing and facilitating economic, social and civic inclusion.

Organisation Chart

CEO/Managing Director

Skilled Creative Media Coordinator (1)
Students with Diverse Learning Needs / First Nations Coordinator (0.8)
TAFE Coordinator (0.4)
Hospitality Coordinator (0.8)
Metropolitan Coordinator (0.6)
General Coordinator (2.4)
Trainees (2)
Industry School Liaison (0.2)

Factory Hand 

Apprentice Master 
10 x Pre-apprentices

Apprentice Master 
10 x Pre-apprentices

Our Values

TSE values

Our Impact

TSE impact

NAIDOC Week Acknowledgement

At The Skill Engineer we support our First Nations people seeking greater protections for their lands, their waters, their sacred sites and their cultural heritage from exploitation, exploration and destruction. We spoke to three proud First Nations young leaders on their perspective of Heal Country – 2021 NAIDOC WEEK theme.

listen here

The Vocational Education and Training Awards recognises student achievement and the valuable support of our host employers in the Work Placement program.

In 2021 we opted for an online video stream format allowing everyone to attend in a covid-safe format with replay available. We received amazing feedback and praise as the first awards ceremony of its kind for VET.

A huge thank you to our entertainment Work Placement students who worked on the project.

the hype

"The youth on the telecast were beyond believably good as was the professionalism of the media content."

– Michael Brolly, Career Facilitator, Industry Training Hub Gosford

"It was fantastic! The recorded segments from the host employers were wonderful and the contribution of your presenters and the students was quite enchanting. Thanks also for the embedded acknowledgment of first nations peoples throughout the event-young people truly are our future."

– Brendan Gembitsky, Manager, Work Placement Coordination Program, Department of Education

"Terrific to see the students take the lead in the presentation of the awards. And how good was the student who played the guitar! Amazing talent. Congratulations, it was terrific."

– Marty Burgess, CEO, Workplace Learning

TSE is contracted by the Department of Education to deliver coordination services for mandatory Higher School Certificate (HSC) Vocational Education and Training (VET) Work Placements across the Central Coast and Northern Sydney. 

Work Placement is a planned opportunity in a quality host workplace that enables senior school students studying particular industry based courses to practise and develop their industry competencies and their employability skills in a vibrant real work context.

TSE liaises with local schools with secondary enrolments, Externally delivered Vocational Education and Training (EVET) providers and host employers to coordinate HSC VET Work Placements for all eligible students.


For host employers like Geoff at Delmonte Building Services, hosting Work Placement students is a win-win situation. Young people are given the opportunity to find their feet and grow professionally, and Geoff gets to preview upcoming industry talent.

For more than a decade, Geoff has been hosting Work Placement students weekly and enjoys mentoring youth from local schools. 

With an abundance of work due to the Central Coast building boom, he has had no shortage of tasks and enjoys having them on site with him each week. 

Construction student Keiren from Kincumber High School, who undertook Work Placement with Delmonte Building Services this year, said he was really enjoyed his Work Placement, and hopes to have a career in construction when he finishes school. We’d like to extend a huge thanks to Geoff and his team at Delmonte Building Services for his involvement in the program over the years, and the support and mentorship he’s provided to many young people. It’s host employers like Geoff who make the Work Placement program possible.

Delmonte Building Services

Business Services

Year 11 Kincumber High School students on their VET Business Services Work Placements. Photo source: Kincumber High School.

Kincumber High School
Kincumber High School
Kincumber High School
Kincumber High School
Kincumber High School


Construction work placement

Gorokan High School student Dylan hits the ground running!

For some lucky students, work placement turns into paid employment. If you do a great job and build positive workplace relationships, you’ll be first in line when your work placement employer has positions available!

Gorokan High School Student Dylan, who completed his Manufacturing Work Placement With Borg Manufacturing on the Central Coast was offered full-time employment recently.

Borg employs more than 550 employees on the Central Coast, and is a major employer and proud to partner with local communities!

A message to all of our work placement students looking for a career pathway after school:

Benefits of your work placement:

  • An understanding of the work environment and what employers expect of their workers
  • An opportunity to explore possible career options
  • Increased self-understanding, maturity, independence and self-confidence
  • Increased motivation to continue study and/or undertake further training

Congratulations Dylan on your new role with Borg. Thank you to Luke at Borg for taking Dylan on board, and for supporting the Work Placement program.

“This has been a great opportunity as I have got to work professionally in a business environment. I have learnt various life skills that could help set up my future career path. This experience has allowed me to become more familiar with what I do and don’t like career-wise. I would definitely recommend Work Placement at The Skill Engineer.”

Dean, St Edward’s College.

“At Skilled Creative, our students are at the heart of everything we do. We want students to pursue a passion, build their skill base, make an impact, and have fun.”

Mike McCarthy
Creative Director at Skilled Creative

For many year 11 and 12 students, striving to become part of the entertainment industry, gaining Work Placement with a production company, without an industry contact can be challenging.

Skilled Creative is a creative agency linked to The Skill Engineer providing young people with a challenging and rewarding Work Placement experience. We collaborate with modern brands and businesses to create storytelling video and audio content that’s generated for success. Our fluid creative structure allows our students to take on any project, no matter how big or small, with support and guidance from Skilled Creative Director Mike McCarthy.

During Work Placement, students focus their energy into material output such as music production, podcasting, event sound and lighting, iPhonography (including script-writing, pre-production and post production) and various aspects of media and content creation, including social media video production. Skilled Creative provides Work Placement students with inspiration and the practical tools to bring their creative vision to life. 

skilled creative
skilled creative
skilled creative
skilled creative
skilled creative


At Skilled Creative, we pride ourselves on listening to our client’s needs, and coming up with high quality content for any project.

In 2021, we turned our attention to supporting local businesses, providing social media services to increase business through lockdowns and out the other side of the pandemic.

Skilled Creative filmed and edited four episodes for the Central Coast Erina Business Chamber of Commerce’s Gosford Beats initiative, bringing live entertainment back to the heart of the city.

Gosford Beats aims to highlight local musicians and venues for the benefit of the community on the Central Coast.

Entertainment students produced the episodes using iPhones, lapel microphones and lighting. They were also involved in all post production including editing, text animation and publishing media.

Skilled Creative is also proud to have its own Youth Steering Committee who have worked on 3 projects:

  • Studio in a box – linking regional students through media projects including film and podcast content creation. The committee is actively involved in designing a web platform for the media to be released from.
  • The Virtual Escape – a live forum event for youth in 2022. Discussing the youth voice and escaping the virtual space in a post covid world.
  • Informing TSE with a youth perspective on a wide range of projects.
skilled creative
skilled creative
skilled creative
skilled creative
skilled creative

Youth View: A podcast by Skilled Creative

Youth View is a podcast dedicated to expressing the voices of young people. Each episode is produced and hosted by a new group of young people focussing on themes relevant to Gen Z.

Skilled Creative is a Creative Agency based on the Central Coast NSW that hosts Entertainment students from Year 11 and 12 as part of their Work Placement program.

youth view podcast
listen here
naidoc placeholder

In the Spotlight: Scott Wilson - Year 13

“For Aboriginal people, as you know, there’s a shame barrier, and it’s hard to step through that shame barrier, for fear of failure, however I was conscious of this, and to conquer it, I put my hand up for every opportunity I could to speak publicly, and have my voice heard”

– Scott Wilson.

Figuring out life beyond the school gates can be tough. Mostly because young people are busy ploughing through the trials and tribulations associated with being a teenager, and teenage life. Whether you’re embarking on the final stages of high school, or facing challenges of your post school life, Scott Wilson will be the first to let you know no two post-school journeys are the same.

Entertainment Work Placement students from MacKillop Catholic College had the privilege of interviewing Gooniyandi man Scott Wilson for Youth View: A podcast by Skilled Creative, about his experiences with overcoming fear and anxiety in everyday life and public speaking.

Scott shared his post-school journey, finding strength in adversity, adapting to life’s misfortunes and setbacks, and squashing fears and anxiety.

“At the forefront of all of my influence is my family. My parents. What my mum and dad have been through, and all of the things they’ve done, the political regimes they’ve experienced, it’s astonishing the things they’ve achieved, and it paved the road for me.”

“I listen to a lot of podcasts and motivational speakers to broaden my perspective and really expand on my thinking about life and about what I can do and where I can go. The support from my parents and family was pivotal to getting me to where I am.” – Scott Wilson 

Since finishing high school in Perth, Scott has gone on to complete a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Anthropology at University of Western Australia. With a passion to help those in need, Scott has excelled as an Ambassador for Headspace, Strategic Advisor for Orygen, National Engagement Officer for Aurora Education Foundation and presenter for Year13’s The Truth Project.

@skilledcreative Our first ‘3 REASONS Y’ TikTok. Hope you like it 🤘🏽🙏🎬 LOOLOO’S Coffee Shack #macmastersbeach #coffee #centralcoastnsw #fogo #unlocked ♬ Surfin - Muroki

The Skill Engineer introduced the ‘Girls of Steel’ program to women in Wangaratta in 2021, aimed at giving females the opportunity to gain a Certificate II in Engineering Pathways.

The program combines training and employability skills, to further foster gender diversity in the workplace, and reduce barriers to female participation in male dominated trades.

In Australia, the underrepresentation of women in industries considered to be ‘male-dominated’, continues to affect gender equality, industry performance and our nation’s economy.

Occupations in national shortage, with strong future demand include engineering, welding and metal fabrication.

The Girls of Steel program aims to address these gaps from every aspect; developing female’s skills, encouraging change in culture and attitudes toward women in trades, and supporting women to transition into a career or apprenticeship.

TSE Managing Director Brendan Ritchens says the program aims to expose women to engineering and manufacturing.

“We’re preparing women for roles in areas like design, biomedical, aerospace, defence and marine, which will be populated, more than likely, by more women in the future,” he said.

“The Girls of Steel program aims to show there are options into trade pathways, traditionally followed by men, and will be full-time employment opportunities for them in trade and technical roles,” said Brendan.

The program also supports potential host employers to engage with a number of female participants through the program to find the best possible fit for their business when looking to recruit an apprentice.

“Participants are given the opportunity to experience paid employment on job sites, which reinforces the whole concept of what we’re able to offer once the course finishes,” said Brendan.

“We’ve already transitioned three young women into trades and are extremely proud of them. It’s a great outcome for these women.”

The course is currently available to women aged 17 and over, and will operate during school hours, within school terms, over 12 months.

Central Coast women will also be encouraged to kickstart a career in non-traditional trades, with the opening of the region’s Girls of Steel program, which will be located at Kariong on the Central Coast in 2022. 

Registrations are open for both our Wangaratta and Kariong campus. Those who are interested should register their interest at

in the media
Girls of Steel in the media