top of page


A Message from the QASA President

QASA represents student advisers in Independent schools,TAFE Institutes,State schools,Universities,Private Education Providers and Government Departments. Our prime role is to foster the sharing of information (career,course, financial support, accommodation, labour market trends) of interest to students.

QASA has a long history of providing a forum for the sharing of information to benefit students with the current organization growing out of the Joint Committee of student advisers (Secondary school, University and TAFE representatives) formed in the late 1960s. Our website is continually being updated as we strive to ensure that comprehensive information is available to student advisers.

The 'Members' section currently features notes from our recent meetings. We would appreciate your feedback as to the information you find most useful.


QASA aims to promote, encourage and foster professional standards in careers education and careers guidance and counselling in schools and other institutions involved in the education and training of students and prospective students by providing information and professional development opportunities and support for members. QASA is a member of CICA, the Career Industry Council of Australia.

QASA membership is open to folk working within the careers counselling sector and costs $110 per financial year or part thereof.

The first two meetings early in each year usually focus on:
1. a review of tertiary offers by QTAC and participating tertiary institutions 
2. QSA issues arising from the previous year's cohort and 
3. innovations and adjustments to programs offered by tertiary institutions for the forthcoming year/s.

A third meeting usually held in October focuses on new developments in the world of work. For example we may investigate employment options in a particular industry sector. Meetings in previous years have focussed on developments and employment in the Performing Arts, IT and Science industries. Employers and other representatives of each industry area (such as representatives from ITABs) are sought to give presentations. We also seek to provide information about new developments and directions in each industry area.

Minutes and other relevant notes of speakers' presentations are posted asap on the QASA website for members to access.

Cost of attendance at meetings for members is covered by the membership fee. Non-members are welcome to attend meetings at cost (with discount for those in CICA organisations) but do not have access to the minutes on the secure website.

The minutes and associated documents are highly valued by QASA members and are used frequently as a vital up-to-date source of information. In addition to the excellent resources provided by meetings, members enjoy the networking opportunities that meetings provide. Further, opportunities to question representatives of many institutions and employers on behalf of their clients can also be valuable.

On behalf of the QASA Executive, we hope this information encourages you to join!


The founding of QASA and the role played by Jim McGrath in that process.


Tribute to Jim McGrath 
Patricia Macgroarty 16 April 2003


In my tribute to Jim I propose to take you with me down memory lane calling on past friends who have helped bring QASA to where we are today. Membership has grown over three decades to approximately 200.

It all began in December 1969 when, prompted by the Commonwealth Department of Labour & National Services, an inaugural meeting was held at the University of Queensland hosted by the Director of the Counselling Service. At this meeting was a well-known figure from Qld Education Research and Guidance Branch, Senior Guidance Officer, John Eckersley. He was joined by representatives from the University of Qld, the Qld. Institute of Technology and two school counsellors. They decided to form a "Committee of Guidance Officers and Careers Counsellors".

In 1972 the same Commonwealth department established the Careers Reference Centre appointing Michael Duran as its first Qld. Manager. Michael joined the committee and it is thanks to these founding members who had the foresight to establish a forum for discussion on educational/vocational issues relating to schools, universities, TAFE colleges, and employer organisations, that we are here today.

When Guidance Branch assumed administrative responsibility for the committee in 1987 the name was changed to the "Joint Committee of Student Advisers". However stormy waters were ahead and the committee was threatened with extinction when Guidance Branch could no longer give administrative support to the committee.

A steering committee was formed and, in due course, an executive management committee elected. The new "Committee of Student Advisers," self-funded by membership fees, relied on considerable assistance from Jim Seaha, Ipswich Grammar, Carolyn Beit, Ipswich Girls Grammar, Frank Hughes, Careers Co-ordinator Catholic Education , Liz Balkin, TAFE and myself representing the University of Queensland, all members of our first Executive Management Committee. Everybody worked tirelessly to ensure the continuation of the committee and to encourage membership growth. But alas we had no home!

Jim McGrath came to the rescue offering us a venue for our executive meetings at Open Access, Woolloongabba where we met regularly to co-ordinate the yearly events and to work on a 'constitution' for submission to Consumer Affairs for incorporation. With Jim's support and encouragement we achieved this in 1996.

My colleagues since those early days from the first Executive and others who followed including Teresa Quinn, John Carroll, Denis Arthy (formerly QUT), Richard Wall, Marion Hay, John Low, our current President Pat Smith, and the 2003 executive
join me now in wishing Jim a happy and satisfying retirement. We thank you for being a gracious host for our committee in the 1990's and for the many pleasurable Christmas parties at Open Access.

We pay tribute to you for your support for the youth of Queensland, and for your contribution to their development that enables them to become highly educated, dynamic citizens within the Asia Pacific region.

The Queensland Association of Student Advisers salute you Jim and we hope that you will continue your involvement with us when you can spare us some time.

Au Revoir
Jim McGrath

bottom of page