Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk today officially opened the new plumbing trades facility at TAFE Queensland’s Alexandra Hills campus.
The project is part of a $10 million revitalisation of the campus promised by the Palaszczuk Government in 2017.
The Premier said a strong investment in skills and training was at the heart of the government’s COVID-19 economic recovery plan.
“Access to TAFE is critical to getting a job for thousands of Queenslanders,” the Premier said.
“We’re investing in skills and training to rebuild our economy and create opportunities for students.
“As we can see from the latest labour force data, our Economic Recovery Plan is working.
“The recent 0.7 per cent fall in unemployment is the biggest drop in the nation. My Government has added 337,400 jobs since we came to office. This is thanks to our strong investment in skills and training.
“We know that Queensland’s continuing economic prosperity depends on having a skilled workforce.
“That’s why we’ve invested more than $247 million to revitalise TAFE campuses since 2017. And now my government is investing more than $1 billion in training and skilling Queenslanders to rebuild our economy.”
The LNP cut $170 million from TAFE Queensland, closed five campuses and left 40,000 fewer Queenslanders able to access TAFE.
“Plumbing trades, engineering and constructions trade blocks have all been upgraded, along with a new nursing and allied health facility,” the Premier said.
“Since 2015 enrolments in trades programs at this campus have more than doubled, with over 1200 trades students in 2020-21.
“These upgraded facilities mean even more apprentices will be able to train at this campus, which is great news for the region and will ensure there’s a pipeline of qualified tradies coming into the industry.”
Minister for Training and Skills Development Di Farmer said the Palaszczuk Government ruled out closing the TAFE and instead, invested $10 million to upgrade the centre.
“Here at the Alexandra Hills campus, we have spent $10 million upgrading a range of facilities, supporting 23 jobs during construction,” she said.
“And there’s even more to come. This year an additional $1.2 million will be invested in this campus to upgrade electro-engineering facilities and a new wet trade facility for brick and block-laying, concreting, tiling, painting and decorating, and plastering apprenticeships.
“This is part of the $7.5 million Revitalising TAFE campuses across Australia Initiative being delivered in 2021-22, jointly funded with the Australian Government.”
Ms Farmer said other improvements funded through the initial $10 million investment included the campus’ new nursing and allied health facility, a student hub and general learning spaces as well as upgrades to other trade workshops and training spaces.
“It is wonderful to see these upgraded facilities already being used by students studying nursing and other health qualifications as well as furniture making, automotive, engineering and construction,” she said.
“This investment, as well as our free TAFE and free apprenticeships programs, means the Palaszczuk Government is supporting more people to earn in-demand qualifications and get started in rewarding, productive careers with strong employment prospects.”
Member for Capalaba Don Brown said the upgrades would make a real difference to training opportunities for local residents.
“Alexandra Hills TAFE already provides exceptional training opportunities but these upgrades mean even more people will be able to benefit,” said Mr Brown.
“It’s fantastic to see the Palaszczuk Government investing in world class facilities right here in Alexandra Hills.”
Member for Redlands Kim Richards said people from across the whole Redlands region came to learn at Alexandra Hills TAFE.
“This fantastic TAFE has trained thousands of people who have then gone on to do vital jobs in the community,” said Ms Richards.
“I am delighted that this investment means it will train thousands more.”
To learn more about courses delivered at the Alexandra Hills TAFE campus visit www.tafeqld.edu.au