Media Releases

St Patrick’s Technical College to host 2019 Lexus Melbourne Cup

St Patrick’s Technical College in Adelaide’s north is delighted to be chosen as one of just 39 destinations from around the world to host the $200,000 Lexus Melbourne Cup Tour in 2019.

South Australia’s only stand-alone Year 11 and 12 vocational education and training (VET) college, St Patrick’s Technical College is committed to having a positive impact of the social, economic and environmental well-being of young people and the wider community in the Northern Adelaide region.

St Patrick’s Technical College Principal Danny Deptula said the College tendered to host the Melbourne Cup to create great enthusiasm and hope in the area. The College’s event will be on September 25, bringing together industry and the community. 


“The College actually has a link with the Melbourne Cup, our founding staff member Terry Neville’s uncle is Ray Neville, who rode Rimfire to victory in the 1948 Melbourne Cup,’’ Mr Deptula said.

“Further to that, our College is a strong advocate for VET pathways and the racing industry is a prime example of how careers through VET can bring great satisfaction and success.

“We are absolutely delighted to be chosen for this great honour of hosting the cup.’’

The Lexus Melbourne Cup Tour was launched by the Victoria Racing Club (VRC) this week and will see the cup visit six countries including Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore, China and the United Kingdom.

VRC Chairman Amanda Elliott said this year’s tour holds special significance for Australia’s most iconic trophy.

“Since the Tour began in 2003, we have delighted in bringing communities together in the shared history and magic of the Melbourne Cup,’’ Mrs Elliott said.

“This year is especially significant, with 2019 marking the 100th anniversary of the three-handled Melbourne Cup trophy design.’’

Scholarship applications NOW OPEN 2019

St Patrick’s Technical College scholarships are now open for 2019.

Did you know that St Patrick’s Technical College has a number of scholarships to help students on their career pathway?

Now is the time to apply for the:

Employ SA Archbishop’s Scholarship

Central Districts Football Club Scholarship

Also eligible for financial assistance are students enrolled in The Smith Family Learning for Life program and assistance through BoysTown.

Click HERE for our Scholarships information.

WITHOUT the help from The Smith Family Learning for Life program, seventeen-year-old Jack Felton may not have secured his first job as an apprentice for Les Brazier Mobility.

Jack, from Davoren Park, was able to enrol in St Patrick’s Technical College’s Metals and Engineering course thanks to the Learning for Life program, which covered his tuition for Years 11 and 12.

Jack with Principal Danny Deptula.

Jack with Principal Danny Deptula.

He has recently started his apprenticeship in body repair technology with Les Brazier Mobility, which specialises in fitting out vehicles for people with physical disabilities. Even better, he was able to complete all the requirements for his SACE prior to beginning his apprenticeship so will spend the rest of his school year with his employer.

StPatsTech offers a number of apprenticeship opportunities which are now open for applications.

Earlier this year Central Districts Football Club awarded two scholarships for young players to attend StPatsTech. Normally the club only sponsors one scholarship, which covers two-thirds of the annual tuition fees, but Tyson Richard and Corey Smith were so impressive on and off the field they could not be split.

Both young men are in the Construction program at the College.

The College also offers an Employ SA Archbishop Scholarship which is a full scholarship covering the College’s tuition fee for the complete two-year program at St Patrick’s Technical College.


Young people seeking apprenticeships need to stand out from the crowd by sharing their passions and practical skills, according to one employer.

Workshop Training Manager from CMV Trucks, Troy Seyfang, stopped by St Patrick’s Technical College recently to speak with Year 11 and 12 Automotive studies students.

CMV Trucks is in the processing of hiring apprentices to start in 2019 and Mr Seyfang said students need to ensure they stand out from the crowd by sharing with employers their hobbies, passions and aspirations.

“I want you (the students) to tell me why you are a good fit for my business,’’ Mr Seyfang said.

“Tell my about your passion, any work you do or other projects. I want to know you are a practical person, good with your hands, good with your mind and can think things through. I want to know that if I give you the job you will 110 per cent go for it and be a great apprentice for us.’’

Mr Seyfang said StPatsTech students often fared well in securing work because of the strong workshop and technical skills they learn at the College.

“StPatsTech does give students a step above other schools whose students may apply because of the mechanical and technical side of things here at the College.’’

Mr Seyfang also urged the students to work hard on their Maths and English as both subjects are vital to being a good mechanic.

Enrolments are now open for 2019 and 2020 at StPatsTech.

Old Scholar named SA’s best Apprentice

St Patrick’s Technical College is this week celebrating the announcement that Old Scholar Jarrod Morton has been named South Australia’s Apprentice of the Year at the 2018 SA Training Awards.

Jarrod attended the College in 2013 and 2014 to study Applied Engineering (Electrotechnology). In June 2014, Jarrod secured a school-based apprenticeship through PEER with BW Thompson Electrical and recently completed his apprenticeship.

Jarrod received his award at a gala event at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre on 7 September.

StPatsTech also saw two school-based apprentices, a teacher and industry program shortlisted as finalists for the awards.

College Principal Danny Deptula congratulated Jarrod and the College’s other finalists Santiago Bribiesca Diaz, Cain Gerrits, Ms Linda Burton and the Northern Adelaide P-TECH partnership on their nominations.

“The recognition of five finalists from StPatsTech is a clear indication that our unique approach to senior secondary education is hitting the right notes,’’ Mr Deptula said.

“Since 2007 we have seen nearly 900 young people commence an apprenticeship or traineeship while at the College. We are immensely proud of the College for its outstanding facilities, strong industry connections, knowledgeable teaching staff and consistent career outcomes for students. But even more, we are proud of the hundreds of young people, including Jarrod, who have taken control of their lives and careers by choosing to come to StPatsTech for Year 11 and 12.

“On behalf of the entire College community, I would like to congratulate Jarrod on being named Apprentice of the Year and wish him all the best for the National Training Awards in Sydney in November.’’

Jarrod joins StPatsTech Old Scholars Jack Donaldson (Class of 2011) who won SA Apprentice of the Year in 2016 and Alex Nikielski (Class of 2011) who won SA School-based Apprentice of the Year in 2011.

Jarrod’s mother Catherine said he had opted to join StPatsTech for Year 11 and 12 to get a more hands-on education. Jarrod Morton 2018

“Jarrod has always been very good at Maths and was considering going to university to do electrical engineering but he thought he would be better off doing the trade to understand how to be an electrician before doing the engineering degree,’’ Mrs Morton said.

“He came to that decision on his own as a teenager, which I think shows a lot of foresight.’’

Jarrod is considering starting his degree shortly.

“We are obviously really proud of Jarrod, his work ethic and his positive attitude. He has worked really hard so deserves this recognition,’’ Mrs Morton said.

She said StPatsTech as a great choice for Jarrod, and his brother Connor who also attended the school and is an apprentice carpenter, because of the opportunities it opened to them both.

Lainie takes the leap

As campus-based St Patrick’s Technical College students return to classes this week, one Year 11 Building and Construction student is doing something a little more impressive. Lainie Thomson’s love of horses and gymnastics has taken her all the way to Europe instead.

Currently in Germany as part of an Equestrian Australia young exchange program, Lainie, 16, is the SA 2017 Junior Vaulter of the Year.

Equestrian Vaulting combines gymnastics and horsemanship skills. It requires great rhythm, coordination, balance and trust between rider and athlete. Riding to music, athletes must complete compulsory moves and freestyle routines and Lainie has been part of the Quicksilver Competition for two years, training out of Cockatoo Valley.

“I really like horses and I did gymnastics for five years,’’ Lainie said before her trip.

“One of my friends did vaulting so I thought I would give it a go. It was pretty nerve wracking at first and it is hard, very hard to get your balance.’’

But once Lainie found her balance, she progressed quickly in the sport. Her favourite move is called a flic-flac, which is a backflip off a moving horse.

As one of about a dozen young people from Australia who have travelled to Germany as part of the Equestrian Australia’s exchange program, Lainie said she was looking forward to watching a major competition in Frankfurt.

Lainie, and her mum Toni who has accompanied her, will be billeted with different German families during the stay. Later this year, Germany will send a group of its talented young equestrians to Australia.

Lainie and her mum will take the opportunity to visit friends in the Netherlands and Greece following the exchange.

For the future, Lainie hopes to quality for the 2019 World Junior Equestrian Games.

Students help build safe places

St Patrick’s Technical College is partnering with St Vincent de Paul Society to provide safe, secure spaces for some of the state’s most vulnerable children.

Students from the College will design and build a play area and dog accommodation for the Vinnie’s Women’s Crisis Centre in Adelaide.

The 21 room crisis centre provides all meals and serviced rooms as well as kitchen, laundry and computer facilities for women in crisis. The facility is a child-friendly, pet-friendly service and provides women in crisis access to practical services to rebuild their lives.

St Vincent de Paul Society’s Schools and Community Engagement Officer Jayne Short visited the College recently and met with the students and staff involved in the program.

The College will provide the design (in consultation with Vinnies), materials and labour. Other Catholic schools will help with fundraising for the project.

“I don’t know how we would do this play area without St Patrick’s Technical College being involved,’’ Ms Short said.

“It’s also really important for us as an organisation to have the opportunity to talk with students about domestic violence and have that conversation around it with young people.’’

The first project will be building the dog accommodation and play space before the playground project scheduled by 2019.

Ms Short said the centre currently homes about 30 children at a time with hundreds expected through the doors in the coming years.

“It’s very important to have a play area within the centre because women are frightened to access the public playgrounds. This playground will let the children play and the mums can relax. I know the play area will be fantastic and it will be very meaningful to our guests,’’ Ms Short said.

The Year 12 Building and Construction class will undertake the project. Year 12 and Religious Education Coordinator John Neate said the College was proud to be involved with the program which not only benefitted the families at the centre, but would help build students’ trade skills.

SA police field 400 calls per week around domestic violence.

The Vinnie’s Women’s Crisis Centre is supported by BankSA, West End Community Fund, La Donna Hygiene, CMV and RAA Security Services.

Bradley revs up in the water

17-year-old St Patrick’s Technical College student Bradley Grimes will spend the upcoming school holidays hoping to prove he could be one of Australia’s next Olympians.

Bradley, who is studying StPatsTech College’s Automotive program, will be competing in the Georgina Hope Foundation Australian Age Swimming Championships in Sydney over eight days from April 21.

He will be competing in the 17/18 Men’s 1500m, 400m and 200m freestyle and hopes to impress selectors looking for the next generation of Olympians ahead of 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

The national titles come after a hugely successful South Australia Age Championships for Bradley in January. He walked away with 13 medals including gold in the men’s 17 and under 1500m and 400m freestyle and 100m backstroke; seven slivers and three bronze medals, including in the Open Men’s 1500 freestyle.

Swimming under Playford Aquatic Club coach Carole Margrison, Bradley represented South Australia at last year’s Pacific School Games finishing the event with three bronze medals.

Bradley trains eight times a week and is aiming for make the next FINA World Junior Championships and in the long-term Commonwealth and Olympic Games.


St Patrick’s Day 2018

All things Irish will be celebrated at St Patrick’s Technical College today, including one aspiring auto electrician who has been following his passion of Irish dancing.

Ryan Harris, 16, from Elizabeth Vale is studying a Certificate II in Automotive Servicing Technology at StPatsTech by day and hitting the dance floor by night as one Cashel Irish Dancing’s most promising male dancers.

Ryan Harris has found his confidence through Irish Dancing.

Ryan Harris has found his confidence through Irish Dancing.

Ryan competed in the national titles in 2017 with his mixed four hand becoming one of the top Irish dancing groups in Australia. He has won numerous competitions and has quickly progressed through grades, according to his teacher Bianca Marron TSRG.

This St Patrick’s Day Ryan and his fellow dancers will be dancing their way across Adelaide with performances from Adelaide Oval to Parahills Community Club.

Ryan, who has autism, said Irish Dancing had helped him build confidence over the years. When he first began he was unable to perform solo on stage. But after three years of dancing with a group, Ryan was confident enough to perform a solo dance at 2017’s national championships. He hopes to compete solo again at this year’s national titles.

“I felt really accomplished. It can be hard for people with autism to perform our dances in front of a crowd of people,” Ryan said.

Ms Marron said Ryan had come on “in leaps and bounds” since joining the club two years ago and was one of four teenage boys dancing for Cashel Irish Dancing.

“We have four young men, which isn’t too bad, and it’s a really positive thing that three of those boys came into dancing late,’’ she said.

“It takes a lot of talent and a unique amount of skill to perfect Irish Dancing.’’

Ms Marron said Ryan and the other boys were looked up to at the club by the younger dancers.

StPatsTech College Principal Danny Deptula said Ryan was a great example of breaking stereotypes.

“Ryan has not let society’s stereotypes about mechanics or dancing hold him back from following his passion,’’ Mr Deptula said.

“The fact that he has been able to overcome difficulties he faced due to autism makes his achievement even more commendable. We wish him all the best for his competition events this year.’’

St Patrick’s Day has been marked by the College with a special Liturgy and Assembly. Archbishop Philip Wilson attended the event and students were treated to celebratory green donuts.

StPatsDay 2018 StPatsDay 2018 StPatsDay 2018

St Patrick's Day 2018 was celebrated at St Patrick's Technical College with a special assembly and liturgy and morning tea.

St Patrick’s Day 2018 was celebrated at St Patrick’s Technical College with a special assembly and liturgy and morning tea.

StPatsDay 2018 StPatsDay 2018 StPatsDay 2018 StPatsDay 2018 StPatsDay 2018


Jobs Boom for the North

St Patrick’s Technical College has welcomed news that Elizabeth will become a centre for crane manufacturing after it was announced Victorian-based Australian Crane and Machinery (ACM) would set up a base at the former Holden plant.

The $16-million announcement was made today and comes following an announcement late last year that Melbourne-based cyber security company VeroGuard Systems would invest $57.5 million in building a manufacturing facility in Edinburgh.

StPatsTech College Principal Danny Deptula said the 600 jobs expected from VeroGuard and 190 from the ACM manufacturing plant was great news for young people looking to enter a trade or technical career.

“While we hope this will provide employment for the workers affected by the closure of the Holden manufacturing plant at Elizabeth last year, we also recognise that the next generation of workers in the North will greatly benefit by having these multi-million companies operating in the area,” Mr Deptula said.

He said Automotive, Metals, Engineering and Electrotechnology students would be well positioned for apprenticeships with the companies. ACM will employ welders, fitters, auto electricians and machinists as well as automotive tradespeople.

“The announcement today is proof there is a strong future for apprentices in northern Adelaide and clear career outcomes for young people interested in trades,’’ Mr Deptula said.

ACM Managing Director Ben Potter said ACM chose the site in Elizabeth because of the presence of skilled labour, engineers and a stable workforce and political environment.

“The location is excellent for export market shipping and access to wind farms where our largest units are used for maintenance. Of course, the weather is also great, which is important for us working and testing our machines in the field,” he said.

ACM manufacturing centre will begin production early next year. The plant will cover up to 28,000 square metres and ACM will receive a $2.2 million grant from the Economic Investment Fund to establish the facility.

ACM is the largest privately-owned manufacturer of cranes and Elevated Work Platforms (EWPs) in the Oceania region and exports to the United States, Chile and Canada.

Today’s announcement adds to the success of Investment Attraction South Australia (IASA), which is bringing companies like Boeing and Technicolor to our state.

Premier Jay Weatherill said the announcement by ACM was avote of confidence” in South Australia’s ability to manufacture and export technically-advanced, large-scale equipment to the world.

“It will create a diverse range of jobs and apprenticeships in the metal trades. This is important in the context of creating and maintaining skill synergies across other industry sectors including defence, infrastructure, energy and mining,” Mr Weatherall said.

Formal agreement between TAFE SA and St Patricks Technical College

TAFE SA and St Patrick’s Technical College are pleased to announce the launch of their new educational partnership which will help young people in Adelaide’s North stay at school and maximise their educational and employment prospects. Students who are enrolled at St Patrick’s Technical College will now receive TAFE SA accredited and supported training while still taking advantage of St Patrick’s Technical College state of the art campus and specialist trade focused SACE curriculum.

St Patrick’s Technical College students will be enrolling with TAFE SA through the Skills For All  Training Guarantee for SACE Students (TGSS) program enabling them to select from a range of professional trade based career pathways while still working towards the completion of their SACE.

By selecting from the wide range of potential courses being offered by TAFE SA and St Patrick’s Technical College, students will learn their skills at a combination of the St Patrick’s Technical College campus in Edinburgh North, TAFE SA’s Elizabeth campus or at a number of other industry based locations. This agreement provides complete flexibility for the delivery of training whilst providing world-class facilities for students to complete their training both at TAFE SA and St Patrick’s.

Under the agreement, St Patrick’s students will choose to enrol into one of a number of Certificate II programs at no additional cost to their school fees (eligibility criteria apply).  The following vocations are currently offered:

  • Automotive (Heavy & Light Vehicle specialisations)
  • Building & Construction
  • Electrotechnology
  • Food & Hospitality
  • Metal Roofing & Cladding (pre-vocational Plumbing)
  • Metals & Engineering

For students not making the transition into an apprenticeship during their enrolment at St Patrick’s, upon completion of their initial Certificate II qualification they will be guaranteed a training position at TAFE SA in the Certificate III course (subject to some conditions) that will help them with their chosen vocational career path.