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2023 NAFEA Conference

The WIL to Thrive: A Brave New World | 18-20 October


Guest Speaker - 2023 NAFEA Conference

Jim Forbes, Principal Policy Officer, Office of the Information Commissioner (Queensland)


Guest Speaker - 2023 NAFEA Conference

Associate Professor Anne Hewitt, The University of Adelaide


Celebrating 20 years

Join us to celebrate 20 years of NAFEA


Keynote Speaker - 2023 NAFEA Conference

Professor Denise Jackson, Edith Cowen University


Keynote Speaker - 2023 NAFEA Conference

Catriona Jackson, Universities Australia


NAFEA is the national peak body for higher education and VET staff involved in the logistics and administration of work-integrated learning across Australia. Each year, the NAFEA conference brings together a range of WIL stakeholders including NAFEA members, WIL administrators, WIL Researchers, placement providers and policy makers.

Crystalbrook Riley, Cairns

Wednesday 18 October – Friday, 20 October 2023

The WIL to Thrive: A Brave New World

The conference will explore current and future opportunities and challenges associated with work-Integrated learning (WIL). The conference sessions will focus on a broad range of topics related to WIL in the context of the COVID pandemic, the National WIL Strategy, growing demands for WIL, the seemingly escalating risks, and increasing demands and pressures on WIL practitioners. The conference will provide a forum to discuss and share strategies, innovations and practices.

Presentations, break-out sessions and workshops are welcomed on the broader theme of the conference as well as related to:

  • Equity, Inclusion and Diversity
  • Indigenous Knowledges and Perspectives
  • Innovative WIL Practices
  • Quality Assurance
  • Risk Management, Student Safety and Student Resilience
  • Rural and Regional WIL
  • Sustainable and Agile WIL Practices
  • WIL Administration
  • WIL and Technology


All fees listed are in Australian dollars and payment options are listed below.

A confirmation of registration and a tax invoice will be issued to all delegates after registering.  Full payment must be made at registration.

The full conference package includes: 

  • Conference registration for all days;
  • Welcome drinks and tapas on Wednesday evening;
  • Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea on Thursday;
  • Morning tea and lunch on Friday;
  • Conference dinner, including drinks.

* See Cancellation Policy below

Note: If you have problems submitting the registration form, please try a different browser or, if using a mobile device, use a desktop or laptop computer.

Closes: 31 January 2023 Super Early Bird Full Package  1 Day only (per day) Online Only Conference Dinner only Welcome Drinks only
Members $545 $200 $50 $150 $90
Non-Members $625 $260 $80 $180 $120
Closes: 31 August 2023 Early Bird Full Package  1 Day only (per day) Online Only Conference Dinner only Welcome Drinks only
Members $600 $240 $60 $150 $90
Non-Members $680 $300 $100 $180 $120
Closes:  (in-person attendance) 14 October 2023 Post Early Bird Full Package  1 Day only (per day) Online Only Conference Dinner only Welcome Drinks only
Closes: (online) 18 October 2023 Members $660 $290 $75 $160 $100
Non-members $740 $350 $125 $195 $135

Keynote Speakers

Professor Denise Jackson, Edith Cowan University

Professor Denise Jackson is the Director of Work-Integrated Learning in the School of Business and Law at Edith Cowan University, Perth. Denise is focused on preparing students for future work and career through embedding meaningful industry and community engagement into the curriculum. Denise’s work has been recognised by several research and learning and teaching awards, including two national teaching awards and the James W Wilson Award for Outstanding Contribution to Research in the Field of Cooperative Education. Denise is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and Elected President for the Australian Collaborative Education Network (ACEN).

Opportunities and challenges for WIL in Australia

In a climate of economic uncertainty, talent shortages and evolving labour market demands, there is an increasing focus on WIL to develop workers that are prepared for complex and fluid environments. Despite the widely recognised benefits of expanding different types of WIL across qualifications, several challenges continue to influence the tertiary sector’s ability to design, deliver and evaluate WIL that is high quality, impactful and available to all students. This presentation discusses some of these ongoing challenges, with a particular focus on equity and inclusion given differences in the participation, experiences and outcomes in WIL among diverse student populations. It will also consider ways the tertiary sector could address these challenges and advance WIL to better meet current and future stakeholder needs.

Catriona Jackson, Universities Australia

Catriona Jackson has served as Chief Executive and Board Director of Universities Australia since 2018, blending a unique combination of extensive policy experience with her reputation as an outstanding communicator.

Under her leadership, Universities Australia champions policies that strengthen the ability of the university sector to provide the best education for students and develop research for Australia’s future.

In her session, Catriona will outline and discuss the new WIL National Strategy that is due to be released later this year.

Guest Speakers

Associate Professor Anne Hewitt, The University of Adelaide

Anne Hewitt is an Associate Professor at The University of Adelaide Law School and a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.  Her research focuses on equitable access to high quality work and education, incorporating the rights of non-traditional workers such as student interns, the regulation of higher education, and the design and implementation of work integrated learning pedagogies in Australia and abroad. She is currently undertaking a comparative investigation of the role of universities in regulating work experience of tertiary students in Finland, France and Australia, and regulatory responses to improve equitable engagement with compulsory work experience.

Pictire of Associate Professor Anne Hewitt

Identifying and overcoming obstacles to equitable engagement with WIL

Securing and completing work-integrated learning (WIL) can involve practical challenges for students. They may be obliged to pay for expenses including accommodation, equipment, and travel, as well as incurring opportunity costs such as salary lost when paid work is sacrificed to enable them to complete WIL. These costs, in addition to discrimination that students may experience in securing and completing WIL placements, contribute to inequitable participation by those from formal equity groups. Many hosts, educational organisations and charitable groups seek to respond to these obstacles and facilitate equitable engagement with WIL. This presentation will consider obstacles preventing equitable engagement with WIL, and strategies which can be employed to minimise and overcome them. In particular, it will consider how WIL design can maximise equitable engagement, and how non-remunerative monetary support (bursaries, scholarships, stipends, and honorariums) can be designed and implemented to facilitate diverse access to WIL.

Jim Forbes, Principal Policy Officer, Office of the Information Commissioner (Queensland)

Jim will discuss issues related to privacy and record keeping in the context of work integrated learning.

Wednesday, 18 October 2023

6pm – 8pm
Welcome Drinks

Thursday, 19 October 2023

8:30am – 5:00pm

6:30pm – 11:30pm
Conference Dinner

Friday, 20 October 2023

9:00am – 3pm


Guests can book directly through the hotel website to get the best available rate on the day. Please note that accommodation will be subject to availability. Guests can join THECROWD to receive 10% off the advertised rate.

Payment Options

Payment can be made by credit card, direct transfer or PayPal. For all payments, except PayPal, you will receive an invoice from the NAFEA Treasurer within 3-4 business days.

Payment Enquiries?

Contact NAFEA Treasurer:

* NAFEA Conference Cancellation Policy

Payment for cancellations or no-shows must be made in accordance with the following schedule.

  • More than 14 days: no charge
  • Less than 14 days: 100% of the total amount

Cancellation must be in writing to the NAFEA Treasurer.

Supporting Associations

ACEN logo


Sponsorship packages are available and can be tailored to your needs. If you are interested in sponsoring or supporting the 2023 NAFEA conference, please contact us.

Thanks to our Bronze Sponsors: DVE Business Solutions

DVE Solutions Logo

Photography and Video

Photographs and video may be taken during the conference. By registering for the conference, delegates understand and agree that their image may be included in future printed materials, on the conference and social media websites.

© NAFEA - 2016