Meet George Dalakouras – Career Agent for Sage Institute of Aged Care

Committed and keen, Career Agent George Dalakouras is kept busy at Sage helping Aged Care students find employment in one of Australia’s largest growth industries…

George, what was your career background prior to Sage Institute of Aged Care?

Prior to working at Sage, I completed a Double Degree and graduated in June 2013. I studied a Bachelor of Business and also a Bachelor of Sport and Recreation.

What do you do in a week at Sage Institute?

A major part of my role at Sage is to organise and assist students to get practical placement. For one quarter of the week, I like to spend my time in classrooms getting to know the students and finding out where they would like to complete their placements.

The second part of the week is spent planning. At any given time, we can have over thirty students finishing and another twenty starting! Once I have a plan, I then contact Aged Care facilities and set students up for placements.

The third part of my week is spent on the road. I visit Aged Care facilities all over Melbourne and build quality relationships with directors of nurses, facility managers and care coordinators. Creating relationships help our students get placements in professional Aged Care facilities.

The final part of my day is helping our careers and training teams.  I research the Aged Care industry widely to help provide our career advisors with the most up to date information.  I also liaise with the training team to help provide our students with career support.

Students from Sage Institute of Aged Care generally gain employment after completion of their placement. I always advise Sage students that they have 120 hours (spent in practicum) to prove themselves.

The Aged Care industry is growing fast and they need qualified staff. If you show ambition, interest and initiative, your chances of being employed are high!

“ The aged care industry is growing fast, and they need qualified staff. If you show ambition, interest and initiative your chances of being employed are high.”

Are there any particular organisations in the Aged Care industry that Sage is closely aligned with?

Sage Institute of Aged Care works with over seventy aged care facilities. We are partnered with these facilities all over Melbourne, and are particularly aligned with the organisation Autumn Care. Students will complete their 120 hours of work experience in one of these Sage recognised facilities.

Who do you work alongside at Sage?

The majority of my time is spent with the other Agents at Sage. We are always bouncing ideas off each other and suggesting ways to make student career support better. I also work closely with the training team. I am always in a class finding out information for students. Our trainers are awesome!

Finally, there’s the career advisors. They all work in advising potential students on starting their new career in Aged Care. I give them as much information as possible about the industry, our career partners and career opportunities for students who complete the course.

What is your favourite part of your job at Sage Institute of Aged Care?

Spending time with the students is my favourite part of the job! I find it enjoyable when a class is finally ready to start placement and they all have a facility to attend. Then after their first week, you get to hear all the fantastic stories and experiences they’ve had – there are so many unique stories…

What’s been your favourite moment at Sage?

Helping one particular student who was extremely keen on a career in palliative care – she was super keen to get a placement in a unique facility that deals in this area. Previously, however, they had only taken students who were studying nursing. I suggested that we try to get a placement for her regardless. After a month of negotiations, she got in. This student was so happy she sent me an email saying that she broke down in tears of happiness.

Why do you think a career in the Aged Care industry is such a brilliant choice?

A career in Aged Care is a terrific choice because the industry is growing at a fast rate. The amount of people who will need care in the next 20 – 30 years is going to double.

What personality traits do you think make for a good Aged Care worker?

You definitely need to have a caring personality. You will become a part of a lot of people’s families.  You will need to be respectful to the needs of the person that you are caring for, and be dedicated to providing the service that they deserve.  It is also vital to know how to work as part of a team.

Do you think there are lots of job opportunities out there for people wanting a career in Aged Care?

Yes, there is a demand for quality carers. I advise all students that if you genuinely care about getting into this industry there will be a position for you. If you show ambition, initiative and interest you can certainly be working in Aged Care.   

Do you have any tips on what budding Aged Care employees should do to make themselves as employable as possible?

Demonstrate to others that you want to work in that industry. Do your research and know your stuff. Show it is not just a job and make it clear that you want to make a difference in all residents’ lives.

What’s your number one vice?

Korean BBQ. There is a great little restaurant across the Victorian Market by the name of Toodori. It is awesome in taste and low in calories!

Do you have any pets?

Yes, I have 2 dogs. One is a Beagle named Angel, and the other dog is a little white thing named Leo.

What makes you genuinely happy?

Being social. I’d rather be out doing something with my girlfriend Megan or out with mates than being at home. There is nothing better than having a beer on a warm night with great company.

Sage Institute of Aged Care – it’s more than a job, it’s a rewarding career.

Vicki Tuchtan

Vicki Tuchtan

Vicki Tuchtan is the Academic Director at Sage Institute of Education. She oversees learning processes, teaching outcomes, resources and course development. A passionate advocate for bettering standards of training in Australia, she is currently writing her PhD thesis on defining quality training in the Australian vocational education sector.
Vicki Tuchtan

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