Never give up attitude pays off
Aziz Raonaq arrived in Australia more than two decades ago and could not speak English.
Fast-forward to today and he is the general manager of a residential property agency in Melbourne’s central business district.
The journey started with Aziz working in a factor assembling gas appliances during the day, while completing a security course at night.
“My first day in the security night course was nearly my last,” Aziz said.
“The teacher handed out thick folders – and spoke with an accent that was difficult to understand.
“When he said, ‘if you don’t think you can deal with this, just leave at the end of the class’, I thought he was talking to me and I nearly walked out on the spot.
“Something inside me said not to, and I finished third in that class ahead of many people whose first language was English.”
He joined Crown Melbourne’s security team in 2009 and was selected for their Talent Management Program, completing a Diploma of Management through Crown College.
“The diploma gave me opportunities to apply learning at work – and learning from work in my studies, because I quickly understood the relevance of the theory,” Aziz said.
“I value what I have learned about emotional intelligence: it helps me identify and respond more effectively to people’s emotions in tense or difficult situations.
“The skills I have learned from my formal training have opened my eyes, improved my English and how I communicate with people and helped me take important steps in my career.”
Aziz was an Australian Training Awards finalist in 2014 after winning the Victorian Trainee of the Year title.
“Vocational education and training gives you qualifications, and practical experience and skills that you can use for the rest of your life,” he said.
“Regardless of your background, if you have a passion for learning, VET can give you the break you need.”