The University of Newcastle will mark a significant milestone this weekend when it celebrates 60 years of producing some of Australia's most talented educators.
The School of Education opened its doors as the Newcastle Teachers' College in March 1949.
Since then, thousands of teachers, principals, early childhood centre workers and lecturers have graduated and gone on to make their mark in communities both locally and overseas. They include theatre, radio and television artist John Doyle (most widely known for his character Roy Slaven from the duo 'Roy and HG'); former leader of the Australian Democrats Cheryl Kernot; former NSW Education Minister Virginia Chadwick; and former athlete and member of the International Olympic Committee Kevan Gosper.
Mr Doyle, Ms Chadwick, Ms Kernot and Mr Gosper will be in Newcastle tomorrow to help celebrate the diamond anniversary and receive Distinguished Alumni awards.
Continuing its tradition of innovation, the School's latest program provides student teachers with enhanced opportunities for practical learning.
'Teach Outreach' provides work experience opportunities to education students by offering them volunteer placements in schools, early childhood centres and community organisations to assist with educational activities.
Teach Outreach Coordinator Dr Erica Southgate from the University's School of Education, said the program - which started just two weeks ago - had already secured more than 100 volunteer placements in 10 organisations.
"For example, there are a number of homework centres across the city that assist children from African refugee backgrounds with their schoolwork and our students tutor at these centres.
"The community partners benefit by having students assist them in delivering educational activities while the students benefit from activities that enhance their professional knowledge and skills."
'Teach Outreach' will be officially launched tomorrow (Saturday 21 March) as part of the '60 Years of Teacher Education' celebration being held from 2pm - 5pm at the Griffith Duncan Theatre, the University of Newcastle (Callaghan campus).