Margaret River digital media technology students head to Zhejiang

Gary Quintrell, Fran Jackson and Matt Sibly with Education and Training Minister Sue
Ellery (second from left) following the presentation of their official T-shirts for the China trip.
Gary Quintrell, Fran Jackson and Matt Sibly with Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery (second from left) following the presentation of their official T-shirts for the China trip.

For two South Regional TAFE digital media technology students and their lecturer, a trip to China this month will give them a chance to immerse themselves in digital animation with some of the world’s leading industry organisations.

Margaret River campus Lecturer Fran Jackson will accompany students Matt Sibly and Gary Quintrell on the seven-day visit to Zhejiang.

They will travel with a lecturer and eight students from North Metropolitan TAFE.

The trip has been organised as part of the 30th anniversary celebrations of the Sister State relationship between Western Australia and Zhejiang.

This relationship promotes commercial and cultural connections and the exchange allows the students to share skills with their Chinese counterparts.

The students were in a group welcoming a delegation of Chinese digital animation students to the Margaret River campus in February.

Now they will attend classes at several institutions and visit leading animation companies as well as the China Animation and Cartoon Museum and the Zhejiang National Animation Industry Base.

The tour is jointly funded by the Office of Multicultural Interests, the Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation and the Zhejiang Government.

The three recently attended an information session in Perth, where the students presented their work to Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery as well as representatives of the funding Departments.

They received their official T-shirts and were given guidance on cultural protocols as well as advice on making industry contacts. 

Ms Jackson said the experience in China would be invaluable.

“It’s a rare opportunity for the students to gain insight into Chinese culture and learn from the experts in traditional animation,” she said.

Ms Jackson explained they would be ambassadors for Western Australian study in digital media, encouraging more Chinese students coming to Australia to choose the west coast for their studies.

“We have a very busy itinerary, and the students plan to get as much as possible out of it – it’s not just a sightseeing tour,” Ms Jackson said.

Mr Quintrell said he was very excited about the week’s activities, and he was particularly keen to learn about the technology being produced in China.

“I’m very fortunate to be selected to go and I’m looking forward to learning about different career opportunities,” Mr Quintrell said.

South Regional TAFE Managing Director Duncan Anderson said he was proud the college would be represented during celebrations marking the 30th anniversary.

“This will be an important shared learning opportunity giving our students an insight into Chinese cutting-edge technology in digital media,” Mr Anderson said.

“We were delighted to host the Chinese delegation to a masterclass in Margaret River earlier this year, and this allows us to strengthen our links,” he added.

Zhejiang has more than 200 animation game companies with annual revenue of approximately 11.5 billion, and hosts the annual China International Cartoon and Animation Festival.