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The secret sauce for transitioning first responders 

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) can be the ‘secret sauce’ when transitioning out of first responder service into new career and life opportunities.  

Fortem’s Transition & Employment Program empowers first responders looking to turn skills and knowledge developed during their frontline work, into nationally recognised qualifications. 

“The school of life is real, especially for our first responder community,” says Anthony Ferro, Transition Engagement Officer, Fortem Australia. 

“Working with our Pledge Partner, Churchill Education we are able to look at how that real world experience could be turned into qualifications that can be used to move on to a new job, new volunteering opportunity, or new training and education.” 

The recent experience of a former Queensland Police Service (QPS) sergeant is a good example of the power of RPL. 

Through Churchill Education’s free RPL assessment process, this retired officer was found to be eligible for the following seven high level qualifications:

  • Advanced Diploma of Work Health and Safety 
  • Advanced Diploma of Leadership and Management 
  • Advanced Diploma of Government 
  • Advanced Diploma of Government (Investigations) 
  • Diploma of Security Risk Management 
  • Diploma of Government Security 
  • Diploma of Government (Workplace Inspection) 

From there, he chose to enrol in the Advanced Diploma of Work Health and Safety, and the Advanced Diploma of Leadership and Management. Two extremely versatile qualifications.

“It has helped me feel more confident in myself and potential prospects for the future,” our former QPS sergeant says.

This is just one of the many early success stories from Fortem’s new Transition & Employment Program. 

“In my experience, first responders chronically underestimate the transferrable skills they have, and their value to potential new employers,” Anthony says.    

“Going through the skills assessment and RPL process really highlights and drives home the skills they have. 

“Nationally recognised qualifications based on work experience, history, and previous employer training are possible.

“Clients who might be unsure what direction their post service career will take are often re-focused and have a new perspective when they see what qualifications they achieve through the RPL process. 

“I am looking forward to seeing where this retired QPS officer goes next, and Fortem will support him and his family every step of the way.”   

Find out more about Fortem’s Transition and Employment program HERE, or contact our team: transition@fortemaustralia.org.au and 1300 33 95 94.