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Promoting student wellbeing

08 May 2019

The Rites of Passage Institute helps young people develop healthy personal identities as they transition from adolescence to young adulthood.

An innovative, personal development program is helping young adults to become more self-aware and empathetic.

Victorian Penola College Year 10 students, who took part in The Rites of Passage Institute program, described it as a great experience.

College deputy principal (Student Wellbeing) Ernie Pisani said the Rites of Passage workshops were stimulating for both staff and students.

‘The Institute’s intimate understanding of adolescents in the contemporary world shapes their programs to cultivate strategies for student self-management and genuine personal growth.

‘We have seen improved self-awareness and more maturity in our students,
and this has supported them as they navigate their way in a challenging world.’

Dr Arne Rubinstein is an expert on Rites of Passage and adolescent development, with 30 years’ experience as a medical doctor, counsellor, mentor, speaker and workshop facilitator.

The programs are designed to support boys and girls to successfully make a transition to adulthood, with a particular focus on creating coming of age ‘Rites of Passage’.

‘Schools and educational institutions are identifying the need to balance the achievement of academic mastery with soft skills such as resilience and self-efficacy’, he said. ‘Improving the wellbeing of students will not only address many of the issues they are facing like mental health and risk-taking behaviour, but it will also improve their academic outcomes.’

The Rites of Passage Institute conducted workshops with Penola College Year 10 students over five days. The Institute also provided staff with a day for consultation to focus on how the school could give staff additional training and education, particularly in trauma-informed practice and highlighting the importance of staff wellbeing.

Catholic Church Insurance (CCI) has partnered with The Rites of Passage Institute to run the program.

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