Inspiring girls at careers forum

Girls inspired at careers forum

Industry function inspiring girls

Five of Canning College’s most inquisitive young students enjoyed an exciting day out as attendees at the Inspiring Girls Careers Forum.

Silvia, who is from Indonesia, Pauline (Philippines), Archana (Singapore), Jeanne (Hong Kong) and Claudia (Singapore) represented the College at the Optus Stadium event, which involved around 200 Year 10, Year 11 and Year 12 students.

Sponsored by the Chamber of Minerals and Energy WA, the event also involved around 80 representatives of 26 resources companies.

Passing the torch to us

The students spoke to company representatives about specific opportunities within the industry.

Pauline, who is also a Student Ambassador, said it was great to be involved in the Inspiring Girls event that was focused on the women in the mining industry.

“It was refreshing to have been involved in an event that was led by women,” Pauline said. “The thing that hooked me was that they made a point of saying the future is about young people. People in the industry know that lowering carbon emissions to net zero can only be done by inspiring the next generation and passing the torch to us. It was inspiring to see so many women talking so passionately about what they do.”

Students were also involved in an authentic problem-solving task to select, build and run a gold mining site in a profitable way. Industry representatives helped guide the students through the process, which involved using tokens to purchase information to help inform their decision making.

Using money wisely

Chemistry teacher Patricia said the students were focused and engaged throughout the day.

“They selected their mine site based on geological maps that showed fault lines, gravitational variation, magnetic variation, core sample results, as well as indigenous sacred sites and ecological concern sites,” Patricia said. 

“They used their money wisely to hire local workers, equipment and earn environmental credit points. They also had to convince investors to invest in their project. It was a very challenging activity that the girls really enjoyed. 

“It taught them about the complexity of real-world situations and the wide range of factors considered by the mining industry. They also learned about working with limited resources, which helped them develop problem solving skills.”

Trade booth visits

The girls visited trade booths and talked to representatives about what each company did and the programs they offered. They had a great opportunity to network and find out about a wide range of job opportunities in Australia as well as internationally.

“The industry representatives they spoke with were impressed with their analytical skills and convincing arguments when seeking investors and hiring local workers,” Patricia said.

“The girls asked great questions and the representatives were very informative. It gave the girls a lot to think about and helped them connect with industry professionals about job opportunities.”

Girls inspired at careers forum

Kelvin’s success in Australia

Kelvin's success in Australia

How Kelvin had success in Australia through Canning College

It would have been easy for Kelvin Nayaho to have been unsettled by his first experience in Perth, Western Australia.

Instead, then a teenager, he pushed on, earned entry into university and became a physiotherapist. Then he moved to Victoria before returning to Perth to consider chasing his dream – medicine. Late last year, he also became a permanent resident of Australia.

And all this in just eight years.

A citizen of Burundi, Kelvin was born in Tanzania, East Africa, and travelled to Zambia after his family was accepted as refugees. When he moved to Perth to join the WA Universities’ Foundation Program at Canning College in 2015, it was with the intention of becoming a doctor.

Working for Australia’s biggest mining company

Although he is currently working as a fly-in-fly-out physiotherapist for Australia’s biggest mining company, BHP, he is considering a return to studies in medicine.

“I decided this year to step away from physio and try to pursue a pathway to medicine,” he said on a recent visit to Canning College. “That’s why I’m up in the mines. I’m able to work seven days and try to save as much as I can. And then I have seven days to prepare, study and try to get in (to medicine).”

Getting a year ahead with Canning

While Canning has provided thousands of international students with opportunities to directly enter Australia’s best universities, the College doesn’t only focus on academic learning. It also provides high levels of care and support to help students settle into life in Australia, which improves their chances of success at university.

“Having a year here at Canning College before going to uni made me a lot comfortable with being in Australia,” he said. “Also, it helped me to make friends easier. Looking at the international students who came straight from their home country into university, they found it harder to adjust in their first year. I felt like I was a year ahead and I was a lot more prepared and composed.”

A surprising start to life in Perth

Back in 2015, even before Kelvin got to meet the teachers who would help him along his academic pathway, he first got to know some of the Student Services team. Landing in Perth two days earlier than planned, he had not been expected at his accommodation and needed immediate help.

“I was 17 or 18 years old at the time, so it was a really big thing,” he said. “I was thinking ‘do they even know that I am here? Am I meant to be here? It was an overwhelming feeling but the staff at Canning College handled everything for me.”

Studying at Canning was different to what he had been used to in Zambia, from the style of teaching, the interaction with staff and the conversations with fellow students, who were from many parts of the world.

“In the first year of uni, everyone talked about high school and how bad their Year 12 experience was and how much pressure and expectation there was. That was a different picture to what I had,” he said.

“Canning College is different. It was the best year in my life, in a sense of how much fun I had with learning. Canning College made us see that teaching works both ways, that we had to do something and be proactive.

“The teachers will ask why do you think that? Just to get us to be participants of learning, which I think made it a lot easier going to uni.”

Moving from physiotherapy to medicine

While studying the WA Universities’ Foundation Program with the intention of going into medicine, Kelvin became aware of the physiotherapy degree at Curtin University. He was a good student and he had the scores to pursue either of the popular degrees.

“I took the ISAT test for medicine. My ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admission Rank) score was pretty good, everything was looking like I was going to get it,” he said.

“But it was just that it cost too much. At the time, 2015, we had a bit of unrest back home and the College actually helped me with a scholarship for my second half of semester to finish my study. I’m really grateful for that because if I didn’t finish, I wouldn’t be here.”

His decision to choose a physiotherapy degree at Curtin University was confirmed during a University Information Day at Canning College. Representatives of The University of Western Australia, Murdoch University, the University of Notre Dame Australia, Edith Cowan University and Curtin visit the College regularly to provide information about courses, scholarships and the campus experience.

“It was on the last day to submit my university preferences and I decided to put physio as my number one,” he said.

Experiencing work after study

Since then, Kelvin has completed his degree and experienced life in the workforce. He travelled to Victoria and worked in a hospital during COVID before returning to Western Australia and working in a private physiotherapy practice in Bunbury, which is about 90 minutes south of Perth.

He moved back to Perth to take up a sports physiotherapy position and was involved in a local rugby club. After receiving his permanent residency last year, he started to think again about his dream of becoming a doctor. Whatever happens next, Kelvin will always be grateful for his Canning College experience.

Kelvin had success in Australia thanks to Canning College. Human Biology teacher Simon and Deputy Principal Tony were delighted to meet him on his return to the College this year.
Kelvin had success in Australia thanks to Canning College. Human Biology teacher Simon and Deputy Principal Tony were delighted to meet him on his return to the College this year.

Great reasons to study in Perth

There are many great reasons to study in Perth. Fayadh explains his experience.

Great reasons to study in Perth

There are many great reasons to study in Perth. Canning College is one of them.

Canning College provided Indonesian student Fayadh with his first experience of Western Australia.

Video subtitle indonesia di bawah ini.

Fayadh has made the most of almost every day since moving from Indonesia to study at Canning College. He studied hard at Canning College to earn a place at Curtin University.

As he had chosen to live at the Vickery House accommodation, which is located next to Canning College, he did not have to move his belongings to another place when he started his Bachelor of Commerce degree.

Canning College is next to Curtin University, where Fayadh found work as a barista and cashier in the university library café.

One of the other great reasons to study in Perth was the work experience opportunities that Fayadh made the most of.

Care and support to help students succeed

When Fayadh joined Canning College, he was following in the footsteps of thousands of international students. The College first welcomed overseas students in 1982 and has since established a reputation for providing students with opportunities to achieve academic and personal goals.

A team of teachers and support staff make sure international students can quickly overcome any concerns or anxieties that are not uncommon in people who find themselves in a new country for the first time.

Student Advisors and a dedicated Student Services help students adjust to life in Perth. This makes it easier for them to perform in the classroom.

Setting the right foundation

The WA Universities’ Foundation Program gave Fayadh the academic grounding to enter Curtin University and tackle his Diploma of Commerce with confidence.

The Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program also provides access to The University of Western Australia, Murdoch University, Edith Cowan University and the University of Notre Dame Australia, as well as other Australian universities such as the University of Melbourne, Monash University and the University of Sydney.

Flexible start times

Fayadh entered the Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program at Canning College in April 2019. He had already completed some comparable Year 11 subjects as part of the Uni-bridge Program at the Darma Yudha school in Pekanbaru, Indonesia.

The Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program starts in January but students can also join the program in April. This is suitable to stronger students, who have additional classroom time to catch up with the work done by those students who started in January.

There is also a Mid-Year entry for the Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program. Students who start this program, complete in the middle of the following year.

Teaching and learning

The WA Universities’ Foundation Program is designed to suit international students. In recognition of the different cultural backgrounds of enrolled students, there is particular emphasis on English language teaching.

While most subjects are taught for 4.5 hours per week, the compulsory English Language and Australian Cultural Studies subject is delivered over 9 hours per week.

For information on subjects and prerequisites, CLICK HERE.

Certification gained

The Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program Certificate is issued by the Tertiary Admissions Service Centre. Students who complete the Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program receive a Combined Percentage Score, which can be directly compared to the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank. The ATAR is a ranking system that determines university entry for students across Australia.

Enrolling at Canning College

Many students choose to engage an authorised international education agent to assist them with their application to enrol at Canning College. Education agents can also help with other administrative tasks such as visa applications. A list of Canning College education agents is provided on our website here.

Students can also contact Canning College directly and apply to join us by following the procedures outlined on our website here.

WA Universities’ Foundation Program CRICOS Course Code 076495K

Powering through student challenges

Vanshi talks about powering through international student challenges
Vanshi talks about powering through international student challenges
Vanshi, left, with Canning College Director of International Operations Lisa De'Ceglie.

Overcoming international student challenges

It isn’t always easy to commit to being thousands of kilometres from home to start an international study experience. But those who are prepared to take on the challenge almost always have a learning experience that they never forget.

Vanshi Jain, who is from India, is one of those people, having studied first at Canning College before enrolling at Curtin University where she is working through a health-related degree.

“Facing all the challenges that a new environment brings isn’t easy,” she said.

But with the help of staff and fellow students at Canning College, Vanshi has embraced her new life in Perth.

Support from Canning College

Vanshi started her study journey at Canning College with a Bridging Program and successfully completed the Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program (WAUFP) in 2022.

“The teachers and staff members were very supportive. They’ve always checked on me to make sure I was okay,” she said.

During her early days at Canning College, Vanshi knew that she could always get help and support whenever she needed it.

“They took care of me like family, a new family away from my family back in India,” she said.

Despite facing a range of challenges, including setting up for a daily life and adjusting into a new environment, Vanshi has become far more independent by studying abroad. She also believes that as an international student she has gained new skills and has become a better person.

“Canning College has made me a stronger, more complete person,” she said. “There’s no person I’d rather be than the person I am now. The challenges of being on my own, of finding a whole new friend group, of growing up, were daunting. Nevertheless, I am very grateful to have chosen to study here.”

As a Western Australian Government education provider, Canning College is committed to preparing all students for their transition to university by improving their academic capabilities and assisting in their personal development. Vanshi has no doubt that studying at Canning before going to university prepared her to pursue her career goal.

“To all those who are thinking about coming to Perth, there is no better place than Canning College to start their academic journey,” she said.

Loving life in Perth, Western Australia

Coming to Australia was exciting for Vanshi, especially when she got to try new things that helped her in learning to adapt to new situations. Perth is considered one of the world’s most liveable cities and has great infrastructure, healthcare, transport system, education, food, arts and music.

“Compared to the hustle and bustle of Melbourne and Sydney, Perth is more relaxing,” Vanshi said. Perth has almost everything to offer for international students, from an easy and affordable study environment to an exceptional life experience.

“It’s a quirky, arty, up-and-coming city with some stunning beaches and a lot of sunshine. No wonder I love living in Perth,” she said.

How music and sport helped Kevin’s studies

How music and sport helped Kevin's studies.

Kevin has made the most of his time at Canning College since joining the Mid-Year WA Universities’ Foundation Program in 2022. He has studied hard and still found time for music, sport and enjoying the Perth lifestyle.

The Myanmar student is hoping to enter The University of Western Australia after his final exams.

Watch the video to find out more about Kevin’s life in Perth and what he enjoyed about studying at Canning College.

New Principal for Canning College

New Canning College Principal Leila Bothams, pictured left with Chair of the Board Jesvin Karimi, will lead Canning College's push to continue providing pathways to university for international students.
New Canning College Principal Leila Bothams, pictured left with Chair of the Board Jesvin Karimi, will lead Canning College's push to continue providing pathways to university for international students.
New Principal Leila Bothams, left, with Chair of the Board Jesvin Karimi

Experienced educator is the new Canning College Principal

Ms Leila Bothams has been appointed Principal of Canning College.

Leila, one of the Department of Education’s most senior and experienced secondary school principals, has extensive educational management experience in international settings. For 10 years, Leila was Principal of one of Australia’s leading schools, Rossmoyne Senior High School, and she has worked as a Director of three education districts.

Leila’s appointment coincides with a recent Department of Education decision to reintroduce local students to Canning College.

She is looking forward to the challenge of building on the College’s successful history.

“Canning College is a centre of excellence and, under my leadership, the College will continue as Western Australia’s leading school provider for international students, whilst opening enrolments to selected local students who wish to pursue a senior secondary education pathway,” she said. 

“I believe that such change will only further enhance the College’s reputation as one of the nation’s best international schools.” 

Leila has many fond memories of the Canning College campus and its facilities. 

Her connection goes back to when the College site was known as Bentley Senior High School. Leila completed her secondary schooling in classrooms that now form part of Canning College and, early in her career, returned to Bentley Senior High School as a teacher of English. 

She has returned to Perth from her most recent role as Director of Education in the Goldfields, the largest education region in Western Australia.

Adelfo Sabatini spent 14 years at Canning College.
Adelfo Sabatini spent 14 years at Canning College.

Leila replaces Adelfo Sabatini, who had been the acting Principal following the retirement of Wayne Axford last year. Adelfo spent 14 years at Canning, starting as Head of Science before his promotion to Deputy Principal in 2014. He moved into an Acting Principal role in 2022.

Congratulations and farewell

Congratulations and farewell to the Mid-Year WAUFP class of 2022-23.
Congratulations and farewell to the Mid-Year WAUFP class of 2022-23.

Congratulations and farewell to Mid-Year students

Congratulations and farewell to our 2022-23 Mid-Year WA Universities’ Foundation Program students, who have completed their studies with Canning College.

The Mid-Year group consisted of 17 students from Cambodia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Myanmar, Taiwan, Singapore and the Philippines. May Myat Noe completed her studies online and all other students were with us in Perth.

Summer Ting, who is from Malaysia, was the overall top student, and also won subject awards for Mathematics Applications and Human Biology, which was shared with Kefira Lotik.

Valedictory speech

Valedictorian Junette Sim, who is from Singapore, spoke of the friendships made and the welcoming environment that helped students to settle so quickly.

“Friends, our journey through Canning College has been marked by challenges and triumphs,” she said. “We have faced difficult exams, burnt through midnights and juggled countless assignments. We’ve also experienced unforgettable moments and formed lasting friendships.

“As we leave Canning College and embark on the next phase of our lives, we will undoubtedly face new challenges and opportunities. But let us remember the knowledge and skills that we are equipped with, which will enable us to navigate through these challenges and seize opportunities… let us look forward to the future with optimism and determination, knowing that we have the power to shape our own destiny.

“As we move forward, let us be guided by our aspirations and our values. Let us be bold in our ambitions and humble in our approach. Whether we pursue further education in business, science or the arts, let us be openminded and curious, willing to learn from others and explore new paths.”

Junette also thanked teachers and staff for their support throughout her study journey.

Principal’s words

Principal Adelfo Sabatini thanked the students for their commitment to studies and the college.

“We’re sad that we’re going to see you go but we’ve had these wonderful experiences with you, and we will cherish those memories,” he said.

“You brought your own perspectives. You brought your own culture; your experiences and you enriched our lives. You would’ve faced many challenges in your time here, but you rose to those challenges. You adapted to a new language, new cultural norms and you handled all of that.”

He urged students to keep in touch and to return to Canning College in future to let staff know about their progress.

Mid-Year journey

The Mid-Year WA Universities’ Foundation Program students started at Canning College in July last year. They will complete final external exams before taking the next steps on their career journey.

Most students will choose to start their university courses next semester either in Western Australia, in other parts of the country or overseas. The WA Universities’ Foundation Program is recognised by Australia’s top universities, including the prestigious Group of Eight.

Award winners

Overall Top Student – Summer Ting (Malaysia)

Accounting and Finance – Fung Siu Kei (Hong Kong)

Chemistry – Summer Ting (Malaysia)

Computer Science – Aung Phone Hein (Myanmar)

English Language and Australian Cultural Studies – Kefira Lotik (Philippines)

Human Biology – Summer Ting (Malaysia) and Kefira Lotik (Philippines)

Mathematics Applications – Summer Ting (Malaysia)

Mathematics Methods – Aung Phone Hein (Myanmar)

Physics – Brendon Chua (Malaysia)

Enrolling now for 2023-24

Canning College is enrolling new students for the 2023-24 Mid-Year WA Universities’ Foundation Program. International students interested in completing their secondary education with us and achieving entry into a top Australian university can find out more about the application process here.

For further information, explore the content on our website or email us at

Canning College is a Western Australian State Government education institution that has been delivering programs for international students since 1982.

2023 news Mid Year Summer

Kefira’s life in Perth

It took WA Universities’ Foundation Program (WAUFP) student Kefira just a few months to feel like she belonged at Canning College.

The Filipino student, who has also studied in Malaysia and New Zealand, will sit her final Mid-Year WAUFP exams in May before heading off to university.

Watch the video to find out more about Kefira’s life in Perth and what was so rewarding about studying at Canning College.

Ly’s study experience

When Sreypov, who is also known as Ly, completed her final year of High School in Cambodia, she chose Canning College on her pathway to Murdoch University. But what does she like most about her study experience? Watch the video to find out.