Our Student Support Team

Meet the team providing the support and mentoring our students need to succeed

Learning Coaches

Our Learning Coaches take great care in delivering real support for our students. They are experts in their industries with a wealth of knowledge and real-world experience, and are committed to helping you achieve your goals.

Construction, Project Management, and Logistics Coaches

Nasser Babaee
Head Coach: Construction and Project Management

Nasser is a Building and Construction professional and has a broad range of skills across the building and construction industry, including quality management, WHS management, efficient project scheduling and management, project profitability management and portfolio management.

In previous roles, Nasser has worked with numerous commercial and domestic building companies including Lendlease, Hansen Yuncken, Watpac and others. He has also worked with smaller building companies to improve their structures and systems, helping them manage their businesses and projects more effectively and efficiently.

Throughout his career in the industry, Nasser has helped companies implement structures and systems across quality management, planning and scheduling of works, recruitment and inductions, and liaison with industry bodies.

In his Vocational Training roles, Nasser has been helping students complete their qualifications and achieve their dreams in becoming project managers, contract administrators, site supervisors and more.

Darren O'Conner
Head Coach: Supply Chain Management

Darren is an end-to-end supply chain professional who has more than 25 years of senior management experience across sectors including, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, banking, transport and logistics. He has worked in both the public and private sectors, including the Victorian Department of Health, Melbourne Metro Trains, Toll, Australia Post, National Australia Bank and CSL.

Darren has hands-on experience consulting directly with several ASX 20 organisations, and he has considerable experience in small to medium-sized businesses.

Darren is passionate about learning and development within his chosen profession. He gains the most satisfaction with one-to-one coaching and development.

Ian Burns
Learning Coach

Ian is an experienced logistician with 35+ years of combined industry experience in high volume metal manufacturing and metallurgy. He has had responsibilities in Supply Chain metrics, Customer and Supplier Relationship Management and Multi-million-dollar Project Management involvement.

Ian’s previous roles have led him to engage with over 160 companies throughout Australia. His work has been in the areas of Logistics, Lean, Retail, Light and Heavy Manufacturing and Supply Chain, Road and Rail transport and has experience in Chain of Responsibility, Workplace Health & Safety and Sustainability.

As part of his professional education, he was engaged in a research and development program within the Sydney Organising Committee for the Olympic Games 2000 in the area of improving the supply chain capability for the games. He has had his work published in leading industry national and international magazines, and he has substantial relationships built with industry leaders.

HR and Management Coaches

Kerri Waddell
Head Coach: HR and Management

Kerri is a Learning and Development (L&D) professional with 21 years’ experience in the field. She has a holistic understanding of the L&D function. She has a broad range of skills, knowledge and capabilities related to organisational training and assessment delivery, training needs analysis, training program development, training procedures development, L&D planning and reporting, staff development, leadership/management, performance management, HR functions and project management.

Kerri’s personal educational philosophy is to make a positive difference to the professional and personal lives of people through learning. She likes to assist people to be the best they can be by helping them to believe in their own abilities. She is truly passionate about helping people to learn, grow and achieve!

Marissa Litonjua
Assessor & Learning Coach

Marissa has worked in the VET sector for over 14 years. She has worked for a range of organisations as Head Trainer, developing training and assessment materials and reviews. Marissa has experience in training large and diverse groups across multiple industry sectors, including workplace training, and teaching international students.

Her competencies range from managerial training and organisational development, validation and moderation. She has served as a Business Mentor for over 10 years, helping businesses grow and succeed in the current business environment. Marissa has also participated in career counselling, and executive coaching.

Marissa is a lifelong learner having completed her Masters in Professional Education and Training, Masters in Professional Studies. Marissa is passionate about sharing a wealth of knowledge and information to help students succeed in their future careers.

Business Administration and Compliance Coaches

Robyn Smith
Head Coach: Safety, Quality & Compliance

Robyn has worked in the VET sector throughout Queensland for the past 5 years.
She has worked with domestic, international and school based students as well as job seekers and other trainers.
Robyn has a background in education, where her teaching skills and understanding of students lead her to look at training. After owning her own businesses in Victoria, she put together her range of knowledge, experience and skills to become a trainer to help others in the workforce or wanting to join the workforce.

Robyn has designed, developed and delivered assessment packages in business, travel, leadership and management, small business and foundation skills. She has also developed employability and life skill resources that she has used with job seekers and international students.
Being with students comes from a genuine desire to support and help them to be the best they can. To see a student gain employment, gain a promotion, or just finish a course is her reward.

Meagan Rawlings
Head Coach: Practice Management

Meagan has more than 25 years of senior management experience working in both the health care sector and for large Multi-National Companies. Having managed and headed divisions from distribution chains to successful sales teams, Meagan is passionate about passing on her real-world experience to her CAL students.

With an in-depth understanding and knowledge of customer relationship management, rapport building, time management skills, leading and managing successful teams and customer service, Meagan can cultivate her students into job-ready leaders.

Roma Jaitly
Head Coach: Marketing

Roma is a marketing enthusiast with over 16 years of experience in training, mentoring and coaching in business and marketing both in Australia and overseas. She prides herself in being an effective leader adept at building relationships with key stakeholders and executing various campaigns and business plans. She is an MBA (Marketing), M.Phil (Management) graduate and has been associated with reputed organisations in her career.
Her core competencies are Social Media Marketing, Customer Service, Marketing Research, and Project Management. She loves to socialise, make friends, travel and listen to music in her spare time.

Jenni Simmons


Jenni has worked in the learning and development consulting and coaching space for over 25 years, working across corporate government and small business environments in that time, supporting all levels of the workforce, from frontline staff all the way up to senior managers. Jenni has been part of the CAL team since 2017 and is thrilled to have the opportunity to work so closely with students through the Careers Hub to help them achieve their career goals.

Student Success Advisors

Our Student Success Advisors are here to ensure that you have everything you need to be successful in your studies. They are your number one supporters, helping you with motivation, study plans and tips on productivity and organisation.

Manager of Student Success

With a background in education and psychology, Michael’s key focus has always been empowering students to not only meet their goals but exceed them, and enhance their self-belief and personal outcomes as part of their journey. He believes the student experience is vital, and he takes immense pride in helping students become their best.

Michael has taught at world-class universities with students from a wide range of backgrounds, and developed processes to support the ever-evolving needs of the current learner.

Student Success Advisor

Tracey has a genuine passion for helping others achieve their goals. Through her own experiences as a CAL graduate, she can empathise and encourage students, who may be facing challenges – whether it’s a return to study after a hiatus, the uncertainty of a new career path or balancing work and family commitments with studying.

Tracey believes that building strong relationships with students from the outset is key to success.She champions each and every student, offering personalised service and meeting the individual needs of students.

Student Success Advisor

Alec is passionate when engaging with students, believing every interaction to be an opportunity for meaningful change and development. Alec enjoys seeing students develop their skills and capabilities – he feels that the learning journey is ever-changing and holds a strong focus on seeing each student evolve throughout their time at CAL.

As a Student Success Advisor, Alec aims to be easy to speak with and open to communication at all times – he works to be a source of positivity and helpfulness, providing guidance and accountability for every student.