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Su-nami sails into a swell new career

Su-nami sails into a swell new career

Su-nami Matsumoto, a proud Yawuro woman from Broome, has taken out the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year Award at South Metropolitan TAFE (SM TAFE).

Born into a multi-race family, which includes Aboriginal, Japanese, and Filipino, broken English was only ever spoken at home. Su-Nami overcame the belief that her limited English skills could potentially be a barrier to studying.

However, it was her passion for the ocean and marine wildlife, that was enough of a drive to see her enrol and complete the Certificate III in Aquaculture through to the diploma, at South Metropolitan TAFE.

“I have always believed learning and development is part of who you become."

“I love the ocean and the great unknown, so I completed my Certificate III in Aquaculture. I followed this with the diploma which I completed with huge support from my family, peers and lecturers,” Su-nami said.

SM TAFE’s Student Awards recognise the achievements of students from across the college, including winners in the categories Apprentice of the Year, Trainee of the Year, International Student of the Year, Vocational Student of the Year, VET Secondary Student of the Year, and the Culturally Diverse Student of the Year Award.

Su-Nami is now employed with Marine Produce Australia, a business that produces Cone Bay Barramundi where she can put her skills and knowledge into practice.

Noting the lack of role models for people in their twenties in her community, Su-Nami is determined to take on the responsibility to break the cycle of homelessness and unemployment by one day owning her own aquaculture mud crab farming business that employs people in her community.

“I would like to go on and do more business courses to help me develop my own aquaculture farm, increasing employment in the Kimberly and helping the surrounding environment,” Su-nami said. 

SM TAFE provides qualifications in aquaculture, fishing operations and maritime studies.

The Fremantle campus features extensive salt and freshwater aquaculture facilities which offers plenty of relevant hands-on opportunities.