Accounting workshops power up young minds

Local Year 9 and 10 students who recently attended the School Partnerships Program (SPP) Accounting workshop at La Trobe University were thrown the hypothetical challenge of solving the state’s power shortage problem using findings from an independent panel of experts. 

Students in the SPPThe SPP interactive workshops are facilitated by Department of Accounting PhD students Luisa Unda, Lachlan McDonald-Kerr and Steven Burch along with SPP officer Tania Sacco and aim to provide students with a first-hand experience of what university is really like.  

‘Acting as business advisors brought in by the Victorian Government, students made use of basic business and accounting tools and guidance as they participated in small teams to look at the benefits and disadvantages of various power options,’ said Ms Sacco. 

‘Finally they agreed upon and presented the most sustainable solution to prevent the impending collapse of the power system.’ 

Students develop and use problem-solving skills as they are applied at university and in the business world. They take into account the importance of considering the consequences of their decisions for future generations. 

‘As the workshop is delivered, La Trobe PhD students make real life connections between the activities and accounting and at the end of the lesson they share their personal stories about university life and their journey with the secondary school students,’ said Ms Sacco.

Between July to September this year, five classes from four local secondary schools within our School Partnerships Program have visited La Trobe University to experience the Accounting workshop. A further four classes from another two schools have registered to attend over the next two months.

‘These workshops have gathered a lot of interest as students are gaining great problem solving skills from this experience and word is spreading on the value of getting a taste of university. It is great to see a program work so effectively and expand to hopefully educate more young minds’ 

The accounting workshops will continue in 2013 as part of the SPP. Feedback from the high schools indicate that the students find these topical and though-provoking with relevant connections to the Victorian and Australian high school curriculum.  

One of the aims of the SPP is that students from Melbourne’s north who may not have otherwise considered university as an option may be inspired to investigate the benefits of tertiary education further and consider it as a pathway.  

To further this aim the Department of Accounting is currently developing a wider discipline specific program of activities with students at the partner schools.  

‘It is hoped that this will help further break barriers and encourage greater University participation including but not limited to Accounting and La Trobe University’ said Ms Sacco.   

For more information on the School Partnerships Program contact School Partnerships Program Officer Tania Sacco:


Stephen Scoglio
Senior Marketing Officer, Faculty of Business, Economics and Law 
T (03) 9479 1604 M 0421 347 816 E