The first round of the Australian Government’s Commonwealth Scholarships Program for Young Australians has offered over 50 scholarships to young people undertaking Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualifications in regional areas with high youth unemployment.
These scholarships support students through their VET training by providing study assistance up to $10,000, as well as $3,000 for a work placement or a 20-day internship.
The scholarships are for VET students training for qualifications that will lead to occupations in identified areas of growth and skills need. These in demand occupations have been identified through consultation with representatives from the following regional areas with high unemployment, where up to 1 in 5 young people are out of a job:
- Grafton and Gosford in New South Wales
- Alice Springs in the Northern Territory
- Maryborough and Townsville in Queensland
- Port Pirie in South Australia
- Burnie in Tasmania
- Shepparton in Victoria, and
- Armadale and Wanneroo in Western Australia.
Scholarships are available for applicants who are aged between 15 and 24 years or recently exited from the Australian Defence Force, with priority given to applicants who are Indigenous, have a disability, or are from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
In Round 1 of the program, two of the top three occupations that the study will lead to are child care workers and aged or disabled carers. In the face of the current threat of the COVID-19 virus, we are seeing firsthand how important it is to have people skilled in these areas and how they can make all the difference.
Round 2 of the Program will open on 24 April 2020 and close on 24 July 2020. The second round is staying open for 13 weeks to give applicants maximum flexibility as personal movement is restricted due to the coronavirus.
The Commonwealth Scholarships Program for Young Australians program is part of the Australian Governments $585 million Delivering Skills for Today and Tomorrow package.