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WA Governor named Patron of Curtin’s Autism Academy

Media release

Curtin University has named the Governor of Western Australia the Patron of the Autism Academy for Software Quality Assurance (AASQA), a social initiative that aims to harness the strengths and special talents of people on the autism spectrum.

AASQA Founder and Director Professor Tele Tan with students.

The Honourable Kim Beazley AC succeeds former Governor of Western of Australia, The Honourable Kerry Sanderson AC, who held the role of Patron from December 2016 to late April 2018.

AASQA, founded in 2015 by Professor Tele Tan from the School of Civil and Mechanical Engineering at Curtin University, creates pathways to valued, long-term employment in the software testing industry for people with autism.

Curtin University Vice-Chancellor Professor Deborah Terry said the University was delighted that Mr Beazley had accepted the appointment of Patron.

“The AASQA team, led by Professor Tan, has made a tremendous impact to people with autism by creating work opportunities through training, education and mentoring programs,” Professor Terry said.

“People with autism possess unique qualities and strengths that are highly beneficial to industries such as IT and Engineering. AASQA’s role is important in helping young people pursue career pathways that are well suited to their strengths, as well as making industries aware of the overwhelming benefits of employing people on the autism spectrum.

“We are delighted to officially welcome Mr Beazley as Patron and look forward to his significant contributions to AASQA by helping the team to pursue its goal of improving the employment opportunities for people on the autism spectrum.”

Mr Beazley said he was honoured to be selected as Patron for AASQA, an important initiative that helps to understand the barriers and opportunities for people with autism.

“AASQA is helping to prepare our State for the future as we navigate our way through the fourth industrial revolution and the technological change that it brings,” Mr Beazley said.

“Students certified through this unique program are enhancing their exceptional STEM skills and receiving work opportunities in our growing software testing industry.

“This is a successful outcome for the community, and an important contribution to ensuring our future ability to harness new modes of innovation and the many economic opportunities they will bring.”

AASQA is a collaboration between the School of Civil and Mechanical Engineering and Faculty of Health Sciences at Curtin University. More information about AASQA can be found online here.